Are you a nurse passionate about providing the best possible care to your patients? Do you want to stay updated with the latest advancements in healthcare and take your career to the next level? If so, pursuing further education may be the key to opening up new opportunities and advancing your nursing career. In this article, we’ll explore 4 reasons why pursuing further education is a wise and rewarding investment for nurses.
1 Enhanced Patient Care
As a nurse, the primary focus is always on the patient. You strive to provide the best possible care and improve patient outcomes. Pursuing further education can help you achieve this goal by providing you with the knowledge and skills to enhance patient care in many ways.
For instance, you can learn about specialized areas of nursing, such as palliative care, critical care, or gerontology. These areas require specific knowledge and skills that can significantly impact patient outcomes. Further education can also help you develop your critical thinking and problem-solving skills. These skills are crucial when dealing with complex cases and situations. With a deeper understanding of the field, you can analyze situations more effectively, identify potential complications, and take proactive steps to prevent them.
According to a study, increasing the proportion of BSN nurses in hospital units by 10% lowered the patient mortality odds by 10.9%. This demonstrates the significant impact that pursuing further education can have on patient care. By opting for a BSN degree, nurses can gain a more comprehensive understanding of the field and develop specialized skills. Fortunately, with the rise of online learning, pursuing a BSN degree has never been more accessible or affordable. Numerous RN to BSN accredited programs now allow nurses to pursue their degrees from the comfort of their homes. These programs offer flexibility and convenience without sacrificing quality, enabling nurses to balance their work and personal life while advancing their careers. If you have fulfilled the requirements for NCLEX after paying the NCLEX exam fee, you can easily handle this program.
2 Stay Updated With the Latest Trends and Technologies
Like any other field, nursing is constantly changing, with new trends and technologies emerging regularly. Med surg travel nurse need to stay current with these advancements to provide the best care possible. Pursuing further education can help nurses keep up-to-date with the latest trends and technologies, leading to improved patient outcomes.
For example, advancements in telemedicine and mobile health technology have made it possible to monitor patients remotely and provide virtual consultations. This increases accessibility to healthcare for patients in remote areas or with limited mobility. For healthcare providers, telemedicine is also favorable as it reduces overhead expenses, eliminates the risk of exposure to contagious illnesses, and allows practitioners to see more people as they can work more flexibly.
CRISPR gene editing technology is another such advancement. It works by harnessing the innate mechanisms of the immune system to cut out infected DNA strands, potentially transforming how we treat disease. Gene modification can help overcome considerable threats to our health, like HIV and cancer, in a matter of years. As gene editing becomes more common, nurses need to be aware of its capabilities, limitations, and ethical considerations.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is also revolutionizing the field of nursing. AI systems can analyze vast amounts of data to recognize patterns and predict outcomes, leading to more accurate diagnoses and effective treatments. Nurses trained in using these systems can provide better patient care and contribute to ongoing research efforts.
3 Better Employment Opportunities
Higher education also opens up numerous career opportunities and higher earning potential for nurses. 77% of new BSN graduates get a job before graduation, and 95% of BSN nurses have a job offer within 4-6 months of graduation.
One of the career paths that BSN graduates can pursue is becoming a nurse practitioner (NP). An NP is qualified to diagnose and treat patients independently, prescribe medications, and provide various healthcare services. As of March 2023, the median annual salary for an NP in the United States was USD 120,575. With an advanced degree, nurses can also pursue specialized roles like nurse anesthetists or nurse midwives, with average annual salaries of USD 207,625 and USD 119,071, respectively.
In addition to these roles, advanced degrees can open up opportunities in nursing education, administration, and research. Nurses passionate about teaching can become nursing educators, while those with leadership skills can advance into nursing administration roles, overseeing healthcare teams and managing budgets. Research is another area that benefits from advanced nursing degrees. Nurses can contribute to ongoing studies and improve patient care outcomes through evidence-based research.
4 Increased Job Security
In today’s uncertain job market, securing a stable job and career path is more important than ever. Pursuing higher education degrees in nursing can significantly increase job security for nurses, as healthcare continues to be an essential and growing industry.
Nurses with advanced degrees are in high demand, and employment is expected to grow 6% from 2021 to 2031. During this period, 203,200 job openings are projected for registered nurses. A nurse with an RN degree is eligible for 51% of the job vacancies, while a nurse with a BSN degree is eligible for 88%.
Furthermore, having a BSN degree may soon become a mandatory requirement for all nursing positions. In 2017, New York State passed the “BSN in 10” law, requiring all newly licensed registered nurses to obtain a BSN degree within ten years of their initial licensure. This was in response to the Institute of Medicine’s call for 80% of nurses to hold a bachelor’s degree in nursing by 2020. Although the BSN in 10 law is currently only active in New York, other states may soon follow suit.
In conclusion, pursuing higher education degrees in nursing can significantly impact the lives of patients and the professional growth and earning potential of nurses. From improved patient outcomes to higher-paying job opportunities, there are numerous benefits to obtaining a bachelor’s degree or higher in nursing.
So if you are a nurse looking to make a difference in your patients’ lives while advancing your career, consider pursuing higher education in nursing. With the proper training and education, you can unlock your full potential and help shape the future of healthcare for years to come.