Competency Differences in ADN and BSN Nurses
Grand Canyon University
NRS-430V: Professional Dynamics
June 8, 2014
In today’s health care field, most registered nurses are prepared at two different levels. There are ADN or associate degree level nurses and there are BSN or bachelor degree level nurses. Both of these levels of nursing require knowledge of human anatomy and physiology, medications, disease process and appropriate treatment methods. Both levels are also required to sit for and pass the NCLEX-RN licensing exam. However, there are differences in the levels of education. First, the time of completion is shorter for ADN degree. Next is the treatment methods that ...view middle of the document...
Baccalaureate level program do however include more in depth studies of assessment, disease processes, pathophysiology, nursing research, public and community health, nursing management and the humanities. This broader range of course work and studies helps the new graduate nurse be better prepared and more knowledgeable of their scope of practice. Also this can help enhance the nurse’s professional development and provides nurses with better understanding of the cultural, political, economic and social issues that affect patients and influence health care delivery instead of only the medical aspect of the nursing care (Impact of education on nursing practice, 2014). The Grand Canyon University College of Nursing Philosophy includes an accurate description of nursing at the baccalaureate level. It states “Baccalaureate nursing practice incorporates the role of assessing, critical thinking, communicating, providing care, teaching and leading. The caring professional approach includes the values of autonomy, altruism, human dignity, integrity, and social justice with unconditional regard for all people. Nursing practice includes health promotion, disease prevention, early detection of health deviation, prompt and adequate treatment of the human response to acute and chronic illnesses and compassionate care for those experiencing death” (Grand Canyon University College of Nursing Philosophy). All of these in-depth studies of the nursing process along with the higher number of clinical hours and a broader spectrum of types of clinical experiences are some of the things that help baccalaureate level nurses practice at a higher competency level.
The AACN and other organizations believe that the degree of education that a nurse receives correlates with his or her knowledge and skills in the workplace, and that patients deserve to have the most qualified nursing staff caring for them at the bedside (Fact Sheet: Creating a More Highly Qualified Nursing Workforce, 2013). There are many supporting facts and research studies performed that support the belief that the level of education plays an important role in patient safety and the level of care that a patient receives. Much of this research shows a strong correlation between BSN education and lower mortality rates (Fact Sheet: Creating a More Highly Qualified Nursing Workforce, 2013). The first example comes from an article published in March 2013 issue of Health Affairs. In this study, Ann Kutney-Lee and colleagues found a 10 point increase in the percentage of nurses holding a BSN within a hospital was associated with an average reduction of 2.12 deaths for every 1000 patients. The reduction of deaths for patients with complications was 7.47 per 1000 patients (Impact of education on nursing practice, 2014). ...