What is a Holistic Nurse Certification?


Holistic Nursing is the future of healthcare. It’s tapping back into the roots of what healthcare was always meant to be – bringing in the wisdom of ancient healers while also leveraging everything modern science tells us about true health and healing.  

Mind. Body. Spirit. Emotions. Environment. It’s all important – and must all be considered when talking about a persons’ well being.

But there’s the thing – for  a long time now, the holistic and alternative medicine industry has suffered from a bit of a PR problem. See, the world of holistic healing is woefully unregulated. Anyone can take a weekend course on alternative medicines or nutrition and call themselves a “health coach” or holistic expert. This results in an industry full of under-qualified “professionals” (some of whom spread dangerous misinformation) that brings down the credibility of the field.

The term “holism” then becomes confused with terms like “woo-woo” and people are led to believe that holistic health and science are on opposite ends of the spectrum. 

But as a nurse, you know that nothing could be further from the truth.

And here’s the thing: Your patients know that, too.

There’s a reason that 36% of American adults use some form of alternative or complementary medicine in their daily lives. The public knows there’s value in this, and they are tired of being stuck in a healthcare model that propagates illness and disease – layering on more medications without seeking to get to the root cause.

If you’re anything like us, you’re a nurse who is ready to rediscover your passion for wellness and elevate your nursing practice. You’re tired of merely managing symptoms for patients. You want to treat the person instead of the illness and help them achieve wellness on a whole new level. This makes you a perfect candidate to become a holistic nurse — but how can you set yourself apart as someone who’s truly qualified to support others in this way?

By getting a holistic nurse (RN) certification!

The American Holistic Nurses Credentialing Corporation (AHNCC) offers a holistic nurse board certification (HN-BC) to nurses who want to help transform healthcare through holistic practice. With this certification, you can elevate your nursing career and help your patients become healthier than they’ve ever been.

What Does Holistic Nursing Involve?

Holistic nursing is an integrative approach to health and healing, which looks at the mind, body, and spirit of a patient to address the root causes of illness and offer treatment modalities that promote overall wellness. Unlike traditional nursing, which focuses on symptom management and treating bodily illnesses, holistic nurses focus on the patient as a whole, forming a deep connection with the patient to help them uncover underlying factors contributing to their ailments.

As a registered nurse, you already have a strong foundation in medical practice. You can administer medications, check vital signs, and change dressings with the best of them! But as a holistic nurse, you can integrate lifestyle medicine and other alternative approaches into your patients’ treatment plan, giving them the best of both worlds. Holistic nurses have the capabilities to utilize a variety of alternative modalities as deemed appropriate. These include: 

  • Healing touch
  • Reiki and other forms of energy healing
  • Reflexology
  • Nutritional counseling
  • Cognitive therapy
  • Relaxation techniques
  • Music and sound healing
  • Acupuncture
  • Biofeedback techniques
  • Mindfulness
  • And so much more

All of these techniques work together to maximize service to patients and encourage total health and wellness.

And guess what? Your patients won’t be the only ones benefiting from your holistic practice. Holistic nurses tend to feel more fulfillment in their roles and be more in integrity with their practice. When you serp into the role of a holistic healer, you also agree to model wholesome living in order to fully serve your patients. Of course, we don’t aim to be perfect – instead, we’re always striving to care for ourselves holistically as well. As you practice what you preach, investing in self-care and making your own health needs a priority, you’ll find that you feel better than ever and have more energy to devote to your patients!

Holistic nursing is unique in that it can be practiced within any other specialty, from OB to family care. This gives us nurses a great deal of flexibility (which is always a plus in our line of work). You can work in a hospital, university, insurance company, wellness center, clinic, functional medicine practice, or even set up your own holistic nursing practice! (And that’s just to name a few options of the nearly endless possibilities out there.)

But whatever avenue of nursing you pursue, the best way to enhance your performance, set yourself apart, and better serve your patients is by becoming a Board Certified Holistic Nurse. 

Educational Requirements for HN-BC

The American Nurses Association (ANA) recognizes holistic nursing as a specialty with a defined scope and standards. For anyone who wishes to practice as a holistic nurse, this recognition is important: It provides a foundation for care, offers clarity to patients, and helps expand the field of holistic practice.

To become a board-certified holistic nurse, you need to meet certain education requirements established by the AHNCC. These include:

  • Earn a degree from a nationally accredited Nursing program
  • Have an unrestricted, current U.S. RN license
  • Have completed 2,000 hours or one year of full-time holistic nursing practice within the last five years
  • Complete 48 contact hours in Holistic Nursing Theory, Research, Practice, or related topics

If you meet these requirements, you can sit for the HN-BC exam and earn your certification as a holistic nurse.

How can TNCCP Help You Earn Your Certification?

If you’re interested in becoming a board-certified holistic nurse, we first want to give you a round of applause! Simply by visiting this page, you’ve taken a step toward breaking out of the “sickness cycle” and carving a path toward true wellness for yourself, your patients, and your loved ones. This will  open doors for you to have a more fulfilling career, better relationships with your patients, and a work-life balance that’s so worth it!

Best of all, becoming a board-certified holistic nurse can help you reach new heights in your nursing career — and when it comes to earning that certification, we’ve got you covered. 

Through our Transformative Nurse Coach Certificate Program, you’ll gain the education and contact hours necessary to be eligible for the HN-BC exam. This AHNA-approved training will help you learn the basics of holistic nursing, moving beyond mere management of symptoms into a more satisfying and comprehensive level of integrative care. 

The Nurse Coach Collective is a holistic nursing program that offers exceptional continuing education for nurses, including services to help you earn your Nurse Coaching and Holistic Nursing Certifications. Our school is created by nurses, for nurses, and the connections you make in your courses can be a crucial lifeline throughout your career. With this community, you can become eligible to serve patients as a skilled, certified holistic nurse. 

Are you ready to begin your journey? Check out our free training to learn more about holistic nursing and Nurse Coaching, and visit our Facebook group to get connected with like-minded nurses today.