Program & Clinical Readiness Requirements

Nursing at Carroll College

Clinical experience begins in the 200-level nursing courses and occur in diverse community settings, varying from Helena’s hospitals to public health, assisted-living, long-term care, home visits, and psychiatric and school settings. Although nursing clinical is primarily in Helena, out of town clinical are required periodically throughout the curriculum, necessitating personal transportation at the students' expense. On-campus clinical experiences are also provided in the on-campus nursing simulation center.

Nursing students are expected to purchase Carroll College nursing scrubs, nametags, hand-held mobile device, and other items needed for clinical/ lab experience. As part of the program onboarding process and prior to beginning 200-level courses, nursing students must demonstrate specific clinical readiness requirements required by our third-party clinical affiliates. These requirements must be kept current throughout the program duration and include, but may not be limited to, up-to-date immunization records, a criminal background check, a 10-panel urine drug screen, maintenance of current health insurance, and American Heart Association Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers certification.

Professional nursing is regulated in Montana by the Board of Nursing to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the public. As part of their educational program, student nurses are entrusted with the responsibility of providing certain kinds of nursing care to clients/patients. It is the responsibility of the faculty to determine that the student nurse has demonstrated reasonable competence to render nursing interventions without risk to the client/patient. If the faculty member’s evaluation of the student nurse’s behavior or health status indicate that he or she is likely to provide unsafe nursing care as outlined in the course expectations, the Statutes and Rules of Nursing, and the ANA Code of Ethics, the faculty has the legal responsibility to deny the student nurse access to clinical learning experiences, which may inhibit progression in the nursing major. Professional liability insurance coverage is required for students engaged in clinical experiences and is included in registration fees.

Standards and Ethics

At Carroll College, all students are required to practice in accordance with the Statutes and Rules of Nursing for the State of Montana.

In addition to the legal standards of professional nursing practice, students must also adhere to the Code of Ethics of Nursing as established by the American Nurses Association.

Additional Requirements

Select to expand each requirement below.

As part of the nursing program curriculum, nursing students are placed with third-party health care providers and receive in-person clinical experiences as explained in the Access to Clinical Statement. Third-party health care providers may require proof of certain vaccinations as a condition of access to their medical facilities and in-person clinical experiences. Carroll College nor the Nursing Department has any control over the vaccination requirements set by these third-party health care providers.

Students must provide copies of certain records to a designated electronic system for verification and tracking purposes. To request a specific vaccination waiver form, students must reach out to the Administrative Support Specialist as different forms are required by each of the clinical partners that may need to be submitted.

Policy: The Department of Nursing requires submission of a criminal background check for all nursing students as part of the application to the nursing major and prior to entering 200-level nursing courses and placement in any clinical setting. Background checks are done at the student’s expense. Students with criminal background checks that reveal a record will be evaluated individually to determine whether they will be admitted to the nursing major.

Prior to starting 200-level clinical rotations, all students must submit evidence of a negative 10-panel urine drug screen that has been completed no more than 30 days prior to the start of nursing courses with a Nu or ACNU designation. Inability to comply with the outlined clinical readiness requirements may interfere with a student's ability to participate in the nursing program clinical requirements, making the student ineligible to progress in the major.

Students must be covered with liability insurance for all clinical courses, beginning with the first nursing laboratory course. Carroll College contracts with an insurance company to provide this coverage. The fee is included with the fees paid at the time of registration in the fall.

It is a requirement of our third-party clinical affiliates that all students have health insurance. For those students not already covered by a policy, health insurance must be purchased at the beginning of the semester.

Students are required to have current American Heart Association Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers certification prior to beginning clinical and must update this CPR certification as required. It is the responsibility of each student to obtain and maintain this certification; however, courses are offered periodically through the Nursing Department.

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