Both the ADN and the BSN take the same licensing exam, receive the same credentials and often have little pay and benefit distinction (Hess, 1996). What appears to have little difference superficially actually has significant implications on the health of our nation, efficiency of practice, and role nursing plays in the healthcare community. The impact that this difference in degrees has is why the bachelor’s degree in Nursing is the absolute minimum requirement for entry into practice. This can ensure that the field of nursing is a field that is professional, scientifically based, and culturally aware.
The concern over having a BSN into the entry level of nursing has been debated for many years. Since the American Nurses Association has proposed the change, the controversy as to what is the difference has between having an associate’s degree in nursing rather than a bachelor’s degree in nursing has sparked a fire in the health field. The education of a nurse is highly important, because the lives of others are in the hands of a nurse. Nurses tend to spend more time with patients than doctors. Their ability to respond, treat, and communicate is imperative to the health field and overall, the patient’s life. Nurses should be able to understand the definition of what a nurse is, what is expected of a nurse, and the education requirements and options that are available. Going through an associate’s degree program prepares the nurse for a broader and more basic care of patients. BSN programs infiltrate a better understand of nursing as a leader, the health field, and educates the nurse in more detail on the care of patients. There are also more hospitals requiring BSN as an entry level, like Magnet hospitals. These hospitals are shown to provide better care and lower statistics, like in death hospitals.
McEwen, M., Pullis, B. R., White, M. J., & Krawtz, S. (2013). Eighty Percent by 2020: The Present and Future of RN-to-BSN Education. The Journal of nursing education, 1-9.
A Drastic Need for Nursing to Shift to Baccalaureate Degrees
There has been great debate in the nursing community for years regarding what should be the educational requirements for a practicing nurse. There are currently many options for men and women to enter the field through LPN, ADN, and BSN programs. More recently, programs have been popping up allowing accelerated BSN obtainment through second degree programs. The debate stems from the conflicting ideas of whether nursing as a whole is a trade, requiring an associate’s degree, or should be considered a profession, often requiring a Baccalaureate degree. In this paper this author will use past nursing history, current medical demands and advancements, and clinical patient outcomes to argue that the minimum education for a nurse should be a Baccalaureate degree.
Recently there has been a strong push toward a strict standard in nursing education and the importance of doing away with the ADN and making the BSN the entry-level requirement for becoming a nurse (Hess, 1996). Many employers, such as the US military, Veterans Administration, and Public Health Service employers, are beginning to side with the ANA’s position and are refusing to hire nurses with less than a BSN (Taylor, 2008).
Ultimately, the leaders in the nursing community must decide what they want before actually implementing any standards and regulations in regards to entry-level requirements as a Registered Nurse. There must be a consensus and plan to make a bachelor’s level education the minimum requirement to practice as a nurse. The amount of knowledge, clinical experience, background in philosophical and ethical ideals entailed in a bachelor’s program is what is necessary to create a critically thinking, competent nurse. Setting a bachelor’s standard will also help maintain the public’s trust in the nursing profession as well as within the health care community.
The second key message focused on the recommendation that registered nurses receive greater levels of training and education. This message emphasized the need for nurses to enter the work force with a baccalaureate degree, or obtain it shortly afterwards. It also stressed the need more graduate nurses, specifically “nurse faculty and researchers at the doctoral level” (IOM, 2011, p. 164). Innovative solutions were devised to speak to nursing school capacity and curriculum in order to attain the IOM recommended goal of 80 percent of nurses holding a BSN by the year 2020.
Nursing is continuously changing and expanding. According to John Hopkins the future of nursing centers around four themes; “improving and increasing nursing education, supporting nurses in practicing to the fullest extent of their education and training, creating a culture and systems in which nurses act as full partners with other healthcare professionals, and collecting better nursing workforce data” (Brooks, 2011). Over the years, collaboration has become much more prevalent and results with fewer errors and redundancies. As years progress, it will continue to grow. Furthermore, education is becoming a very important aspect of nursing. Most workplaces require a bachelor’s degree to be hired, whereas in the past it didn’t matter. Personally, I know I will pursue my Bachelors of Science in Nursing and hopefully continue on to my
In 1965, the American Nurses Association shared its vision for the future of nursing education. A primary goal in its message was that a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) becomes the minimum requirement for entry into nursing practice (Nelson, 2002). Fifty years later, debates on this issue continue. In its report, The Future of Nursing: Leading Change and Advancing Healthcare, the Institute of Medicine shared its recommendation that 80% of nurses possess a bachelor’s degree by the year 2020. A significant number of health care facilities have adopted the practice of hiring nurses with BSN over those with two year Associate’s Degree of Nursing (ADN) or a three-year hospital based diploma program. Stakeholders in the Registered Nurse (RN)
The essential of baccalaureate education for professional nursing practice provides the guidelines all professional nurses should follow to achieve the desired outcomes for the degree. Nurses need to have strong skills, knowledge, education for a better practice. In addition, it is essential for nurses to use their critical thinking while collecting and analyzing their assessments.