Professional nursing organizations continue to propose that the bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) become the entry-level requirement for professional nursing. If this legislation is adopted, a current associate degree in nursing (ADN) and diploma-prepared nurses who have passed the registered nursing licensure examination would retain the title of the professional nurse. After that time, non-baccalaureate nurses would not be able to use the title of the professional nurse.
Do you believe the proposal for the BSN as the entry level advocates the advancement of the nursing profession? Regardless of educational preparation, should nurses who passed the registered nursing licensure examination before the proposal’s adoption be allowed to use the title of the professional nurse? Would you personally support both of these proposals? Why or why not?
The Bachelor of Science in nursing (BSN) should not be a requirement for the title of professional nurse. Regardless of educational preparation, nurses who pass the licensure examination should be allowed to use and continue to use the ‘professional nurse’ title. There are many associate degree registered nurses who demonstrate professional clinical nursing practice. In my opinion, earning a nursing license and being able to assess, diagnose, plan, implement and evaluation in an acute or complex medical setting requires expertise that is not guaranteed with the attainment of a BSN. For example, most Registered Nurses with three years’ experience or more are proficient in their clinical practice. However, a new BSN RN graduate with no clinical experience will probably be considered a novice and can be trained by the ADN RN.
In my opinion, requiring the BSN for entry level nurses would be a disservice to the profession. This mandate may discourage potentially excellent nurses from entering the field of nursing. We are currently in the era of nursing shortages in acute and non-acute care settings. This requirement would exacerbate the current crisis. Furthermore, every RN does not desire a leadership position. In fact, some registered nurses enjoy working at the bedside and have no desire to work in any position that currently requires an advanced degree. These nurses are valuable in the nursing profession.
I believe the BSN teaches nurses valuable content and helps them approach bedside care with an evidence-based, culturally competent, and theoretical perspective. Even so, I would not support the proposal to remove the title of professional nurse from the ADN RN nor do I support requiring the BSN as an entry level requirement for bedside nursing care. In my opinion, the public is concerned that nurses have clinical skills that can save their life, the ability to advocate for their optimal care and the compassion to understand their fears. I have never witnessed a case in which a patient or patient family requested a new nurse who was a BSN RN.
How would you respond to my answer informative or uninformative or missing information and why?
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