Benefits of BSN: 5 reasons why registered nurses should pursue a BSN degree
Healthcare is developing rapidly, and every day brings news of breakthroughs in medical science. It could be in the form of new and improved medicines or novel treatments for critically ill patients. Therefore, there is a perpetual need for skilled professionals, including nurses, to match the pace of change. Nurses are an integral part of healthcare. They often receive praise for their selfless service to humanity, heroic roles, and supporting the system.
Nurses are an essential part of all healthcare facilities. They help doctors, communicate with the paramedics, support the administrative staff, and care for their patients and families. Therefore, it won’t be wrong to say that nurses keep the healthcare system afloat. A recent example is their performance in curing and helping patients during the covid-19 pandemic. This is the reason hospitals always seem to require skilled nurses.
Nurse shortage in the current times
According to official numbers, the US might face an acute shortage of skilled nurses to meet quality standards of patient care services in the coming years. Even the new nurses trained by institutions won’t be enough to fill the gap, let alone create a surplus supply. Many reasons contribute to this shortage; an increase in the population of baby boomers needing more patient care services and senior nursing staff’s retirement are among the notable ones.
One way to work around this shortage is to up-skill the current nurses, working in the capacity of RNs only. They can assume high responsibility roles and reduce the shortage in those capacities with better education. Many institutes have responded to this need by developing highly adaptive and all-inclusive curriculums to speed up this upskilling process. Today universities are offering an All-Round RN to BSN Curriculum for online programs that allow registered nurses to gain a BSN degree in less than 12 months. This way, nurses can continue their practice and pursue higher education simultaneously. Other reasons nurses should pursue a BSN include:
- Offering better patient care
Nurses can also work with an associate degree, but those with a bachelor’s degree have more than basic skills for delivering patient care. With better education and skills, nurses can elevate the overall standards of patient care. A study published in Health Affairs shows that hospitals reduced post-surgical mortalities’ frequency by inducing more BSN nurses.
- Higher salaries
Better education for nurses implies a chance to earn a better salary. The biggest advantage of nursing is that every degree means a step higher on the development path in your career. Therefore, it is common for nurses with BSN to earn more than associate degree holders. In general, nurses with a BSN degree earn an average annual income of $88000 compared to $72000 of those with an associate degree.
- Better employment opportunities
As healthcare becomes more complicated, hospitals and patient care facilities prefer nursing staff with higher education. It means that a nurse with a BSN degree has more chances of landing a job of their choice or being approached by good employers than someone with a basic associate degree.
Nurses with BSN degrees are preferred for leadership skills, problem-solving, better communication, and teamwork. Moreover, BSN nurses have expertise in educating patients and their families about disease control and prevention, keeping good health, and maintaining a healthy diet. They learn these skills during their degree programs since preparing them on these aspects is a critical part of their curriculum.
- Availability of more career options
With a BSN degree, you have more career advancement opportunities available to you. You can opt for a career from a range of nursing specializations with the proper certifications. You can go into research, opt for management roles, stick to bedside care, choose rehabilitation, or educate the masses as nurse educators, to name a few. These options help start your career on a better track and prepare you for more advanced nurse practitioner roles in the future. Some of these specializations are more lucrative than others. Therefore, you can grow your skillset and lifestyle with a BSN degree.
- Better decision making power
Nurses play a vital role in a healthcare facility, so often, you need to make critical decisions. With a BSN degree, you have more autonomy to make decisions and solve issues without any consent from the higher-ups. The ability to make swift decisions without delay in getting higher-ups’ approval can help reduce the mortality rate and improve patient outcomes. With more decision-making power, you can better work with new health technologies, coordinate patient care plans, or decide the length of a patient’s stay in the hospital. The ability to make decisions freely is needed to address the increasing demand for patient care in health facilities, and the unnecessary approvals can impede this process.
There is no denying that nurses are like a life support system for healthcare. They accommodate an influx of patients and help others in their job duties. The critical role of nurses requires them to be prepared with current skills and educational qualifications to meet the existing and future challenges in healthcare. With a BSN degree, nurses can enhance their skills and capabilities and meet healthcare needs more effectively than with a mere associate degree.