The Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) is a body that works with other health professionals in the United States to evaluate the credentials of nurses and other health professionals, who have been trained outside the country.
When I planned to migrate to the States, I’d never heard of this body until I arrived.
I remember looking for my first job as a Registered Nurse.
I met with the hospital Nurse Director, bringing all my certificates and degrees in a large brown envelope.
She needed nurses and wanted to give me the job, but when she looked at my paper work, it seemed foreign to her.
She asked where Kenya was and I told her that was where I trained.
On hearing that, she told me that since I was trained outside the country, she could not give me the job unless I was evaluated by CGFNS.
At that time I wondered why I had to go through this body, but over time I came to understand and appreciate what they do.
In this article, I want us to focus on why this body is important.
- Why CGFNS?
CGFNS is an important body because it protects the public by ensuring that nurses who attend nursing schools outside the country are well-trained and qualified.
This is not to say that other countries do not have well-trained nurses but simply ensures that, as professionals, they are on the same page.
Prior to coming to the States, I took four years studying at Cicely McDonnell Nursing School back in Kenya.
I sent my paperwork to CGFNS, and they compared the education I received in Kenya, course by course, to the American nurses’ education.
After carefully examining my credentials, the body forwarded their recommendations to my state’s Board of Nursing.
(They will forward their recommendations to whatever state you are living in when you file for your application.)
The Board of Nursing then recommended that I repeat my Psychology rotation, as I had not done enough clinical hours as a student nurse per their evaluation.
I enrolled in a college and did one semester of Psychology rotation.
This was the beginning of my journey toward working in America as a nurse.
If you are an international nurse, this is probably the place you will begin before you can get a job in the states.
For more information about this body, you can Google them at CGFNS International.