Is a BSN Important? Nurses Speak Out


Is a BSN Important? Nurses Speak Out

From higher salaries to increased patient survival rates, the advantages of being a bachelor-prepared nurse are plentiful.

By Mariah Williams
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“Patients Have a Greater Survival Rate”
A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association,and reported by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, found that surgical patients treated by a greater percentage of nurses holding Bachelor’s Degrees had a “substantial survival advantage” over those patients who did not have nurses with a BSN. It was also reported that there has been a 10 percent increase in nurses with BSN degrees and this increase in BSN-prepared RNs has decreased the risk of patient death by approximately five percent.
—Margaret Flanagan, MSN, FNP-C, Hoag Hospital

“It Has Advanced My Career”

I am a Bachelor-prepared nurse and I feel it has added to the advancement of my career as well as given me more confidence in my field of study. I think it is smart for hospitals to want Bachelor-prepared nurses as a degree defines a full knowledge base and a unified profession. When there are scattered degrees with the same licensure it is bound to cause resentment when there is advancement. Clinically, there might not be any difference, but in theory and problem-solving expertise there might be.
—Christine Magnus, RN, BSN, CPON, Childrens Hospital Orange County

"The BSN Gives Nurses More Credibilty"

Professional and financial autonomy and career advancement are directly correlated with higher education. The Baccalaureate level of education gives nurses more professional control.
By Irma Cooper, RN, MS, CNS, Citrus Valley Medical Center, Covina, CA

"The BSN is a Doorway to Career Opportunities"

The BSN introduces us to the full scope of professional opportunities we can pursue, whether that means providing direct care, educating future nurses, offering leadership and administrative skills, or conducting research. It is a doorway leading to wonderful ways in which we can provide better care.
By Toni Christopherson, RN, MSN, EdD, CHOC (Childrens Hospital of Orange County

“Advantage in Salary Negotiations”

I find that a Bachelor’s Degree gives an advantage when it comes to salary negotiation. That coupled with experience usually gets you a bump in salary where a two-year diploma doesn’t. That was my experience as a 4-year grad seeking a new job in 1981. Now what I see is that a BSN offers greater opportunities for a myriad of positions in healthcare. The military requires a Bachelor’s Degree for nurses entering into service to our soldiers. Many pharmaceutical and research companies require a BSN, and the list goes on.
—Martha Marshall, RN, BSN, Senior Strategy Consultant, Kaiser

"Patients Are Sicker"

In 1983, prospective payment legislation changed Medicare’s reimbursement formula for acute care hospitals. Payment based on the diagnostic-related groups encouraged a different form of utilization of inpatient care than payment under the fee-for-service method. New financial incentives resulted in patients being admitted sicker and discharged earlier from hospitals. A shorter length of hospital stay and sicker patients resulted in an intensity of care that required professional nurses in large numbers.
By Irma Cooper, RN, MS, CNS, Citrus Valley Medical Center, Covina, CA

“Opens Doors to Management”

The BSN opens the door to advancement opportunities, and salary structures in most areas of nursing will be increased. Many BSNs will go on to obtain the next level of education, a Master’s in Nursing, and will become the leaders, managers, and visionary personnel for healthcare organizations. I would caution ADNs are a going back to school to make sure they take courses from a college or university that is "accredited." —Margaret Flanagan, RN, MSN, FNP-C, Hoag Hospital

"Nurses Face High Tech Challenges"

Advances in medicine and healthcare systems have created multiple new units and care settings inside and outside of the hospitals. (Examples: ICU, CCU, DOU, Outpatient Surgery, etc.) The complexity and unpredictability of high technology in hospitals required nurses to be educated in nursing science and skilled in critical thinking rather than ritualistic practice. The BSN-prepared professional nurse has all the skills and abilities to function independently in a high-tech environment. She can handle a workload of very sick patients with multi-disease processes. She can set priorities and problem-solve. She is a patient advocate, health care educator, case-manager, and discharge planner all in one.
By Irma Cooper, RN, MS, CNS, Citrus Valley Medical Center, Covina, CA

"The BSN Makes Us Better Nurses"

The educational process to achieve a BSN is more intensive and there is a longer preparation time, so the nurse receives more knowledge regarding the services required to give excellent nursing care.
—Margaret Flanagan, RN, MSN, FNP-C, Hoag Hospital


"I Can Provide Better Care"

"I know that the Bachelor’s Degree provided me with an increased theoretical background to enhance my practice and to provide even better care."
By Toni Christopherson, RN, MSN, EdD, CHOC (Childrens Hospital of Orange County)


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