How can I refresh my skills after being out of nursing for several years?

By | 2022-02-11T11:06:40-05:00 July 10th, 2009|1 Comment


Dear Donna,

How do I go about taking hands-on classes as I’ve been out of nursing for many years, raising a family and caring for parents? I took a refresher course five years ago but did not go into hospital nursing at that time. Do I need to take another refresher course?


Dear Donna replies:

Dear Gail,

If you want to get back into hospital bedside nursing you will likely either need to take another refresher course or find a hospital that offers a re-entry program for experienced nurses who have been away from the bedside.

If you want to consider other options in nursing, you don’t necessarily need to take a refresher course. Consider contacting a local blood bank, outpatient hemodialysis center, or home care company to do intake, etc. Call a few nursing agencies to see if they have non-traditional offerings. Get out to career fairs to see what is available beyond the hospital.

Do medical-related volunteering now while you look for paid employment. Volunteering is a good way to get your foot in the door somewhere, build your confidence, make contacts, hone old skills, and learn new ones. Besides, volunteering often leads to paid employment. Read “The Value of Volunteering” at and “Reentering the Workforce” at

I also suggest that you read “The ULTIMATE Career Guide for Nurses: Practical Advice for Thriving at Every Stage of Your Career” ( for additional tips and advice to move forward and create a dynamite résumé in spite of the fact that you have been out of the workforce for some time. Where there is a will there is always a way.

Best wishes,


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One Comment

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    Daljit kaur May 20, 2019 at 10:18 am - Reply

    I want refresh my nursing .

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