Hospitals today covet nurses with Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) due to their proven performance and studies that have shown patients cared for by BSN-prepared nurses have better outcomes. Because of this, more employers are offering financial incentives for nurses to return to school and the number of schools that offer RN to BSN programs has increased.
The time for advancement is now
The Institute of Medicine has set a goal to have more than 80 percent of the nursing workforce holding a BSN by 2020 in recognition of the impact these educated nurses have on patient outcomes. Nurses with a BSN are associated with reduced patient post-operative mortality, fewer hospital acquired infections and decreased morbidity. With less than five years to go, hospitals across the country are scrambling to find ways to attract BSN-prepared nurses and encourage the nurses they already employ to further their education. Online RN to BSN programs, which may take only two years to complete, are tailored for working nurses with associate degrees looking to advance their career.
The art of convenience
One of the biggest differences between an on-campus and an online RN to BSN program is convenience. While the online counterpart delivers similar material to what is taught in on-campus programs, it is also structured to be flexible and support a range of schedules. Nurses can, for example, enter an online RN to BSN program on a full- or part-time basis and continue working, allowing nurses to avoid foregoing a steady income in exchange for an education. Online courses are also efficient, removing the time consuming nature of commuting to and from school.
Earning a BSN sets a nurse on a pathway for career advancement. Nurses with a BSN have more job opportunities, which can lead to higher salaries, improved job security and less burnout and stress—leading to reduced rates of attrition. A BSN is often the first step toward upward mobility within the healthcare system, leading nurses to management positions. In addition, to offset the cost of school, many employers offer tuition reimbursement plans that can reduce the cost of online RN to BSN programs.
With the number of online RN to BSN programs and financial aid available for nurses, working RNs are well positioned to earn their bachelor's degree and set themselves up for a better future.
Learn more about the Cal State San Marcos online RN to BSN program.
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