Registered nurses (RNs) ready for career moves should consider earning a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN). These degree programs afford mobility, competition and improved performance. Enrolling in an accelerated RN to BSN online program is one way to earn this degree, which has become the minimum requirement for entry-level positions in many of the country’s leading hospitals.
Freedom of Choice With Job Mobility
There are over 2.8 million nurses currently working in the United States, with the greatest concentrations in states like Texas, California, Florida and New York. However, nurses are in demand across the country, with openings in a variety of rural and urban environments.
For nurses looking for a change of scenery (or for those interested in applying to specific hospitals that specialize in a branch of medicine that interests them) a BSN degree has become the standard certification for entry-level nurses. According to the American Association of College of Nurses, “The four-year baccalaureate programs in today’s nursing colleges provide the educational and experiential base not only for entry-level professional practice but also as the platform on which to build a career through graduate-level study for roles as advanced practice nurses, such as nurse practitioners, nurse midwives, clinical specialists, and nurse administrators and educators.”
The Cutting-Edge of Competition
Although nursing is in high demand, it is still a highly competitive environment for those looking to become managers or advanced practice nurses. Becoming a nurse manager requires years of practice, unparalleled social skills and often an advanced degree. Advanced practice nurses must also hold an advanced degree.
The first step in either approach is a BSN. RNs are in the best position take advantage of an accelerated RN to BSN online program, which allows them to leverage their preexisting knowledge and clinical practice experience toward their degree requirements. These nurses can finish such a program in under two years.
Studies have shown that nurses with BSNs benefit patients. For instance, one study funded by the Robert Wood Johnson found that a 10 percent increase in the proportion of baccalaureate-prepared nurses on hospital units correlated with a decrease in patient mortality by 10.9 percent. The study spawned a new industry-wide goal of a nursing workforce with an 80 percent rate of BSN graduation by 2020.
With large hospital groups like the Veteran’s Administration aiming to fill their available nursing jobs with BSNs, nurses today should plan for the long term by considering the benefits of a baccalaureate degree in nursing. In the end, the beneficiaries with the most to gain are the patients.
Learn more about the UNCW online RN to BSN program.
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