In co-operation of a high level critical thinking has in the past been linked to fostering the foundation of most AD nurses consequently increasing traditional roles that nurses held. The method that increases enrollments in the nursing programs has therefore been advocated to help deal with the shortage of nurses and in most cases majority of the new graduates receive their education at the associate degree in nursing (ADN) level. This has then increased the need to increase the number of nurses who get educated at baccalaureate (BSN) levels. There has been a n increasing demand to increasing the number of nurses and this need ahs played a role in the influx of students who most graduate at the associate degree (ADN) level. In this 21st century there is an increasing expansion in the field of professional nursing increasing the demand for better educated nurses particularly those for the nurses at the four degree levels. Research has by Janine Spencer (2008) showed that the patient outcomes can be attributed to higher levels of nursing education.
Facilitating Articulation through Curriculum Reform
Research by Aiken, Clarke, Sloane & Silber shows that most of post surgical mortality rates were affected by the education levels of the nurses involved consequently attainance of more favorable achievements. According to research consucetd by Spencer (2008), the BSN incorporated theory based practice plays a significant role in encouraging more broad view of existing alternatives as well as offering an expanded undertsanfing of the clients’ and the patients behaviors. Also, the part of the BSN curriculum incorporates participation of the community health nursing which serve to providing a peek into the lives of the patients while they are outside the confines of the hospital. The necessity to take nurses to condust their duties outside a hospital is faced with limited resources prompting a deeper level of critical thinking which is often unachieable at the novice RM level.
With such complexity in nursing practice the ease by which RN’s are obtained through diploma or the ADN plays a crucial role in alleviating the nursing shortage by providing a fatter path to completing duties while at same time offering a more cost effective method. Unfortunately such inconsistencies in academic preparation serve to preventing unity amongst the nurses as well as create a dissension within the nursing profession.
Another viable way by which the volume of BSN graduates can be increased is by encouraging promotion of statewide and mandated articulation agreements while also ensuring that there is an environment that facilitates academic progression. The process of implementation of the articulation agreements should start with efforts targeted at bringing together the nursing educators both at the AND the BSN levels to help in assessment of the preliquisite, evaluation of the overall curriculum as well as in the transfer of credits.
In an effort to Increase RN-BSN enrollments there is need for programs that help develop public health competence among the RS-to- BSN student in the rural communities. Such type of RN/BSN nursing programs goes long way to offering rural students with opportunities to help them address the significant health acre need in the community. The programs foster development of a public health leadership competence amongst the nurses through provision of possibilities fro nurses to completing their BSN degrees without having to traveling and this is attributed to the fact that they are able to position themselves in a way that they are able to provide the critically required healthcare leaderships in their local communities.
The RN/BSN nursing program allows a collaboration and partnerships between local healthcare agencies, community colleges and the university thus giving the students in the program an opportunity to access benefits that are derived from a streamlined admission process, newly deeveloped courses as well as receive onsite mentoring which leads them to reflect on the health needs in their local communities. Such redesigned curriculum plays a significant role in preparing students for the public health leadership by encouraging competency application during the student participation in delivery of the essential public health services in their home communities. Such kind of nursing programs assist students to develop as leaders through their development of public health competencies. Also, facets of such programs may also serve to encourage more students to commit themselves to completing their BSN while at same time increasing their capacities among PHNs.
Generally, there is shortage of nurses in the nursing profession and this has been coupled with the ever increasing demand for nurses at the ADN and the BSN levels who are capable of meeting the challenges encountered in the changing face of health acre. This problem has been facilitated by the various barriers that are faced by nurses at the associate level degree especially when they are transforming from RN to BSN. Some of the barriers identified include: increased cost, time constraints, lack of a well thought out curriculum as well as lack of support from their places of work. Therefore in order to avail avenues by which nurses enhance their careers ,pursue their graduate studies while at same time participating in education or leadership roles there must be articulation at state level, institutional and individual levels in terms of curriculum reforms and in all the facets that are involved in the transition process. The articulation process must incorporate participation from legislators, regulatory counsel, nurse educators as well as the nursing enhancement program that serve to better accommodate RNs who are interested in pursuing a higher degree of learning that consequently benefits, the nurse, the institution as well as the patient.