Many RNs in New York were waiting patiently to find out whether or not the BSN in 10 Bill would be passed on December 19th, 2017. When it finally did pass, it shook the nursing community. The bill focuses on the New York State Bachelors of Science in Nursing for RNs. This law requires that nurses get a Bachelors of Science in Nursing within ten years of getting their RN license. Now I know what you’re thinking. “What if I am an RN and have had my license for long time?” Well the New York State law grandfathers you in and you are not required to get your BSN within the ten-year period. Even though it is not required of those nurses, how does the bill affect you?
How Does the Bill Affect Nursing Students?
For new nurses who are just starting to think about becoming an RN in New York, it made things more difficult. The level of difficulty is raised but not to such a high degree where it stops people from entering the profession. The high degree will not affect most students like it would have if passed a decade ago. More young people are going to college than ever before. Bachelor’s degree programs in liberal arts can be transferred to a BSN program. Many students who are thinking about becoming an RN have already entered a BSN program. Students in the BSN program will have a higher level of education than an RN that obtained a license before the bill became law. Having a BSN will also allow the nurse to get more education, which can translate into better quality of care when they get their first job.
How Does the Bill Affect Current RNs?
RNs who obtained their license before the bill was passed are grandfathered in and are not required to enter a BSN program. Even though this is true, it still has certain effects for current RNs. RNs will eventually be required to have specific knowledge that only new RNs will know. This will set a divide among the nurses with experience. It’s almost like common core being implemented in school districts. What can the seasoned and experienced nurses do in preparation for this? They can either choose to enroll in an accelerated BSN program or they can keep up to date with all current nursing material. Nursing material will be available to you online so that the divide can be a lot smaller. Speaking to the younger nurses about what they have learned in these programs and review those topics with other nurses will benefit nursing staff overall. Nursing staff needs to keep up with the increasing complexity of care for patients.
What Does This Bill Mean for Nursing and Healthcare?
Complexity of care will only increase with time and more knowledgeable nurses will be needed to take care of these patients. Patient care and technology are both becoming more complex each year. New York State is concerned that nurses will not able to keep up with these technologies and new methods of providing care. Advancing the requirements for education for nurses was a step in the right direction in that regard. The direction of healthcare advancement is continuing up and new nurses need to be prepared for that change.
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