Associate -Degree Versus the Baccalaureate – degree level in nursing My theory is that the more education a nurse has the better he/she can be at their job of taking care of patient as a whole and on a complex level. To obtain a Nursing Degree one can start at the LVN or go all the way to a PHD in nursing. This paper will focus on the abilities or competencies of a prepared Associate Degree nurse, and the abilities or competencies of a Baccalaureate Degree Nurse. This is a hot topic now and has been for many years. I have been hearing for many years that ADN will be phased out, and only BSN will be used in the future. The time period in which to mandate this event is governed differently by the state where the nurse works. There are catchy phrases out there like BNS in 10, or BSN by 2020. “As of 2010, at least 18 states, including New York, New Jersey, were considering BSN in 10 legislation.” (nursing link 2011, 07.) The first step is to define nursing.
“Nursing is the knowledge based discipline, which focuses on the wholeness of human being.” (studymode, 2012,02.) The ADN nurse and BSN take a different approach in teaching their students. They both take the same state mandated NCLEX, but have a different time of training. “The Associated Degree takes a shorter path of two years where the BSN takes a longer with 4 years of education to complete the degree.” (studymode, 2012,02.) Now to break this down and let you know the difference of a 2 and 4 year nursing program. The Associate trained nurse is more task oriented, while the BSN is based on theory and research. I having a diploma hospital based program spent 4 or more days in the hospital setting, but my wife has her BSN and she tells me she usually only spent 1 or 1.5 days at the hospital. I see this now also, where I work we see the Associate nurses more than the BSN students. The clinical experience is only part of what a BSN is exposed to.
“You will receive crucial training in key areas like communication, leadership and critical thinking – enhanced knowledge that will become ever more valuable in the complex and changing future of health care delivery.”(NY Times 2012,06). In short a nurse that takes the extra time of going to a BSN is better educated to take care of their patient’s special and unique needs. Can provide a higher level of care and uses the tool of critical thinking as part of their treatment process. The arguments of BSN over Associate diploma will be supported with the following examples. The Association of College of Nursing provided examples and has linked it to better outcomes for patients, and is pressing for a higher educated nursing force. “In the October issue of medical Care, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania found that surgical patients in Magnet hospitals had 14% lower odds of inpatient death within 30 days and 12 % lower odds of failure to-rescue compared with patients cared for in non- Magnet Hospitals.” (aacn. 2012.10).This research is reflective of Magnet hospitals have a higher proportion of BSN. The push for higher education in nursing work force had shown to be beneficial.
In its October 2010 report The Future of Nursing, the Institute of Medicine states “ and increase in the percentage of nurses with a BSN is imperative as the scope of what the public needs from nurses grows, expectation of surrounding quality heighten, and settings where nurses are needed proliferates and become more complex.” Institute of Medicine 2010). This means that the population is getting sicker, living longer, becoming more complex to treat, and are in need of higher educated nurses. Knowledge of basic nursing skill in is not enough to get by on you need a higher level of education. “According to the IOM Institute of Medicine, core competencies for today’s nurse include : Leadership, Healthy policy, System improvement, Research and evidence-based practice, Teamwork and collaboration, Competency in specific content areas such as community and public health and geriatrics, and Technological knowledge.” (nursing link 2011, 07.) This means that nursing educational need are an ongoing process to meet the special needs of our complex, elderly, and sick patients. An advantage that a BSN will have over an Associate nurse is job opportunity.
In the world of professional nursing BSN are chosen before, and is some case required to be in management position. Also it opens the door for further education such as but not limited to Certified Registered Nurse Anesthesia, Nurse Practitioner, and the list goes on, but these are my hot buttons. To conclude this paper it is imperative to pursue a BSN degree. It helps provide a higher level of care to the population needs. Patient outcome has been proven to be improved. At some point a BSN is probably going to be mandated any way. The information here strongly supports the need for a BSN education. The oppurinity is out there. However one pursues a higher education on line, or in the classroom lets up the bar to give our population the highest level of care they deserve.
Fink, J. (2011, 07 11). 6 reasons to get a BSN. Retrieved from nursinglink.monster.com/education/articles/3542-6-reasons-to-get-a-bsn?print+=true.
Marybabu. (2012, 02). Bsn vs Associate Degree in Nursing. Retrieved from studymode.com/essays/Bsn-Vs-Associate-Degree-In-Nursing .
Medicine, I. o. (2010). The Future of Nursing. Washington, DC: National Academies Press.
PÉREZ-PEÑA, R. (2012, 06 23). Why a BSN? The New York Times, pp. 1-2.
Rosseter, R. (2012, 10 24). American Association of nursing Creating a More Highly Qualified Nursing Workforce. Retrieved from www.accn.nche.edu/media-relation/facts-sheets/nursing-workforce.
Smoothieshah. (2012, 08 30). Difference between adn and bsn nurses. Retrieved from studymode.com/essy/Differences-between-adn-and-bsn.