Articles

What’s the Difference in an RN and BSN ?

If you desire a career in nursing, then find out the difference between RN and BSN programs out there, and launch your career today!

A BSN and an RN-to-BSN

What’s the Difference Between a BSN and an RN-to-BSN ?

A career in nursing is one of the most sought-after degrees, with a growing demand for skilled, trained, and degreed professionals. The Bureau of Labor Statistics is forecasting the need for Registered Nurses to increase by 9% and advanced practice nurses by 45% from 2020 to 2030.

Many college programs offer traditional BSN programs and an accelerated BSN program to meet this high demand. With each providing the same final result, a Bachelor’s in Nursing Science, finding the right program for you can be confusing. You may be left wondering what the difference is between these programs.



First Things First: Know Thy Letters

First, let’s clarify the letters associated with these degrees. If you have a two-year associate’s degree in nursing, you earn the letters ASN. If you complete a 4-year traditional college program in nursing, you earn the letter BSN. However, you will have to sit for state board exams to earn the RN letters in both instances. Once you pass the boards, you become a registered nurse.


Traditional BSN Programs

So, you must first complete your degree to be an RN. Next, we can explain the difference between traditional BSN programs and the RN-to-BSN accelerated program. The conventional programs are suited for students going to college for the first time. These students do not have degrees in other fields and want to become nurses. This BSN program is going to take approximately four years to complete.

During this time, you will complete general education courses such as algebra, English, history, humanities, and other required electives offered by your program. Students usually complete those courses within the first two years of the program. Next, you will begin your nursing and healthcare-specific labs and likely get some hands-on experience.

At the end of the program, you will have earned your Bachelor’s in Nursing Science, BSN. Following graduation, you will sit for the state boards examination. Once you pass the boards, you can add RN to your credentials to be a Registered Nurse. Are you interested in these traditional programs? Check out our Top 50 Best BSN programs.


The Fast Track: Online RN-to-BSN Programs

There has been an explosion of new accelerated RN-to-BSN programs over the past decade. The demand for nursing is increasing, and the ability to get on a “fast track” appeals to many candidates. However, these accelerated programs are for second-degree students with a bachelor’s degree in another field.

So, the BSN is their second undergraduate degree. If you have an associate’s degree in nursing and have passed the state boards, you are already an RN. However, pursuing a bachelor’s degree has benefits, and these accelerated programs are perfect for those candidates.


Accelerated BSN Programs

Another candidate that fits well into the accelerated program is someone who has a degree in a field other than nursing and is looking to make a career change. These programs can make that possible within 18 months, some even offer online or hybrid learning options. If you are curious what some of these programs look like, check out our 15 Top Online and Hybrid ABSN programs, we have already done some research for you!

The best thing you can do as you look into an accelerated RN-to-BSN program is to check the prerequisites. Dig out your transcripts and compare the courses you have already completed to their required prerequisites. If you need to take a few classes before you start the program, this will help you when figuring out your own personal timeline.

If you desire a career in nursing, there is definitely a program out there to fit your personal profile and will have you launching your career in no time Like the speedy route? Check out our Top 50 Best Accelerated BSN programs listing.


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

Nursing Diversity

Nursing Diversity Infographic

Nursing diversity is explained in an infographic that is easy to understand and is a must-read for all nurses!

Share this infographic on your site!

Nursing Diversity Startling Statistics

  • 87% of all Registered Nurses are Caucasian
  • But, in 2014: 62% of the U.S. population was Non-Hispanic White

Beginnings:

  • 1878: 33 year old Mary Eliza Mahoney is accepted into a nursing program.
  • She had worked 15 years in a hospital before that
  • At the time, the program only allowed in 1 African American, and 1 Jew in the class
  • 1879: Mahoney became first African American nurse in U.S.

Nursing Demographics Throughout History:

  • Number of nurses skyrocketed: from 10,000 in 1900 to 230,000 by 1930
  • In 1900 white men represented 80% of all male professional nurses, by the 1920s 98% of all such men were white
  • As of 1930 only 60% of African American male children were enrolled in school
  • 1910: 23% of all men self-identifying as professional nurses were African American, by 1930 that number dropped to only 10%
  • 98 years later: while RNs are still mostly white, there is greater diversity

2008 RN population:

  • 83.2% non-Hispanic white
  • 5.4% African American
  • 3.6% Hispanic
  • 5.8% Asian/Native Hawaiian
  • 0.3% American Indian/Alaska Native
  • and 1.7% multiracial nurses

2015 RN population:

  • There are 2,694,540 RNs in U.S.
  • 87% are Caucasian
  • 4.9% (133,041) are African American
  • 3.7% (93,415) are Asian or Pacific Islander
  • 2% (54,861) are Hispanic
  • 0.5% (13,040) are American Indian or Alaska Native
  • 1.2% categorize themselves as “multiracial” (two or more races)

Nurses employed full-time:

  • 77% of Hispanic/Latino RNs
  • 86% of African- American and Asian/Pacific Islander RNs
  • 70% of Caucasian RNs

Education:

2011 nursing students from minority backgrounds:

  • 26.8% were enrolled in Bachelor of Science in Nursing programs
  • 26.1% in master’s nursing programs
  • 23.3% in research-focused doctoral nursing programs

Nurses with master’s or doctoral degrees

  • 11% are Black or African American
  • 10.4% are Caucasian
  • 8.4% are Hispanic

By 2060:

  • minorities will represent 50% of U.S. population
nursing diversity

Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

Bringing Birth Back

Infographic – Bringing Birth Back

Share this infographic on your site!

The Rise of Cesareans

Historically, cesareans were a last resort to be used only when a mother was beyond help in order to save the baby. The death rate was 100%. Today, while they have saved countless mothers and babies, they are so commonplace that they comprise 1 in 3 births (32.8%) [1,296,070 out of 3,952,841 births – 2012]. The World Health Organization stands by its claim that only 10 – 15% of births are justified by a cesarean.

Members of the medical community, armed with new research and standards, are helping families to bring birth back!


Cesarean Rates

1970: 5.5%1991: 22.6%2002: 26.1%
1975: 10.41992: 22.3%2003: 27.5%
1980: 16.51993: 21.8%2004: 29.1%
1983: 20.3%1994: 21.2%2005: 30.3%
1984: 21.1%1995: 20.8%2006: 31.3%
1985: 22.7%1996: 20.7%2007: 32.0%
1986: 24.1%1997: 20.8%2008: 32.3%
1987: 24.4%1998: 21.2%2009: 32.9%
1988: 24.7%1999: 22.0%2010: 32.8%
1989: 23.8%2000: 22.9%2011: 32.8%
1990: 22.7%2001: 24.4%2012: 32.8%

Why does it matter?

Because cesarean sections are considered to be major surgery and with that comes risk.

Risks for mom

  • The death rate is over 3.5x higher for cesareans: 13.3 per 100,000 women (low-risk planned caesarean) vs. 3.6 per 100,000 women delivering vaginally
  • The complication rate is over 2x higher for cesareans: 9.5% for cesareans vs. 4.5% for vaginal.
  • General surgical risks – infection, injury to organs, serious bleeding
  • Chronic pelvic pain
  • More difficult recovery

Risks for baby

  • Respiratory problems: 1.0 – 4.0% when Caesarean is performed without labor vs. <1.0% when baby is delivered vaginally
  • Childhood disease like asthma and diabetes


How did we get here?

Cesarean benefits

  • It’s the only safe option for babies positioned in the transverse lie (baby is laying sideways, perpendicular to mother)
  • It’s the only safe option when placenta is covering the cervix
  • in some situations (i.e. changes in fetal heart rhythm which might indicate low oxygen levels) a physician and mother might decide the benefits outweigh the risks and proceed with a cesarean

Reasons women had their first cesarian:

  • 34%: Labor arrest: absence of progress of active labor (as defined by cervical dilation and descent of the presenting part) for 2 hours or longer.
  • 23%: Nonreassuring fetal heart rate tracing (heart rate too fast, too slow, abnormal)
  • 17%: Malpresentation (i.e. breech presentation [breech], shoulder presentation [transverse lie]) – only 3.7% of births are breech, 2.2% are transverse, 94.1% are Cephalic.
  • 7%: Multiple gestation (twins triplets etc..)
  • 5%: Maternal-fetal conditions (i.e. gestational diabetes, infection, and other high-risk conditions)
  • 4%: Macrosomia (babies with birth weight of 8 pounds, 13 ounces or larger)
  • 3%: Preeclampsia (multi-symptom disorder characterized by high blood pressure and high levels of protein in the urine)
  • 3%: Maternal request
  • 4%: Other obstetric indications

However, the World Health Organization claims only 10 – 15% of births are justified by a cesarean. In 2012, 32.8% of births were cesarean. In other words, it’s overused.

There are several contributing factors to and evidence of overuse.


Variations in Cesarean Practice

Cesarean rates by state in 2012 [2]

AL – 35.5%IL – 31.9%MT – 31.2%RI – 31.6%
AK – 23.4%IN – 30.7%NE – 31.5%SC – 35.4%
AZ – 27.2%IA – 30.8%NV – 35.0%SD – 25.4%
AR – 34.9%KS – 30.2%NH – 30.8%TN – 33.8%
CA – 33.2%KY – 36.2%NJ – 38.7%TX – 35.3%
CO – 25.9%LA – 40.2% NM – 23.9%UT – 22.6%
CT – 34.8%ME – 30.5%NY – 34.2%VT – 27.1%
DE – 33.1%MD – 35.0%NC – 30.6%VA – 34.3%
DC – 33.6%MA – 31.7%ND – 28.5%WA – 29.0%
FL – 38.1%MI – 32.6%OH – 30.9%WV – 35.9%
GA – 33.8%MN – 27.0%OK – 33.8%WI – 26.3%
HI – 25.1%MS – 38.1%OR – 28.3%WY – 29.2%
ID – 24.9%MO – 31.8%PA – 31.5%

Hospitals have a cesarean rate range from 7% – 70%!!

Maternal characteristics, such as age, weight, and ethnicity, have consistently been found not to account for the increase cesarean rate or its regional variations.

Payout system favors cesareans:

Average facility birth charges in 2010

  • Birth Center – vaginal $2,277
  • Hospital – vaginal w/ no complications $10,166
  • Hospital – vaginal w/ complications $13,170
  • Hospital – cesarean w/ no complications $17,052
  • Hospital – cesarean w/ complications $23,111

Fear of malpractice suits:

  • 90% of OBGYNs have been sued in their career.
  • 29% of OBGYNs admit to increasing cesarean births because of the risk of liability claims.
  • Many hospitals and practitioners do not allow women to have VBACs, which raises the cesarean rate.

VBAC rates

VBAC rates – percent of births after cesareans performed vaginally

1970: 2.2%1995: 27.5%2005: 10.1%
1975: 2.0%1996: 28.3%2006: 8.5%
1980: 3.4%1997: 27.4%2007: 8.3%
1985: 6.6%1998: 26.3%2008: 8.4%
1989: 18.9%1999: 23.4%2009: 8.4%
1990: 19.9%2000: 20.6%2010: 9.2%
1991: 21.3%2001: 16.4%2011: 9.7%
1992: 22.6%2002: 12.6%2012: 10.2%
1993: 24.3%2003: 10.6%
1994: 26.3%2004: 9.2%

Convenience for doctors and moms:

  • an estimated 4-18% of mothers request a cesarean
  • only 28% of mothers who had a cesarean tried to deliver naturally.
  • 10% of births are early schedule births for non medical reasons
  • scheduling cesareans allows more patients, which increases income
  • 60% of birth are during business hour

Where do we go from here?

“This is a game-changer.” [in reference to the March 2014 recommendations released by ACOG] Michele Ondeck, president of Lamaze International

In March 2014, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommended changes in practice: [5]

1. Allow more time for labor

  • First stage-early:
    • Extend early first stage of labor up to 6cm dilation (instead of 4)
    • No time limit (instead of 20hr [first birth] and 14hrs [2nd+births])
    • allowing oxytocin be administered for at least 12–18 hours after membrane rupture before deeming the induction a failure.
    • If labor is induced (22.8% of the time), use cervical ripening methods (such as misoprostol, dinoprostone, prostaglandin E2 gel, Foley bulbs, and laminaria tents)
  • First stage-active: Labor arrest should not be diagnosed except for mothers who fail to progress…
    • with ruptured membranes
    • at least 6+cm dilated (instead of 4cm)
    • at least 4 hours of adequate contractions (instead of 2hr).
  • Second stage:
    • No maximum time length.
    • Labor arrest should not be diagnosed during second stage until at least 3 hours of pushing (instead of 2hr) [first birth] and 2 hours (instead of 1hr) [second+ birth].

2. Apply external pressure to turn babies in breech position

  • Apply external pressure to turn babies in breech position (
  • More than half can successfully be turned and delivered vaginally. Cesarean should only be considered if this fails
  • manually rotate babies in head down but undesirable position (Occiput posterior [‘sunny-side-up]). Mothers who rotate their babies have 9% chance of a cesarean birth compared to 41% who don’t manually rotate.

3. Interpret and stabilize the fetal heart rate

  • Amnioinfusion: infusing normal saline into the uterine cavity can stabilize abnormal fetal heart rate.
  • Scalp stimulation can be used to determine if a cesarean in necessary when heart rate abnormalities are present.

4. “Big babies” have to be much bigger to validate a cesarean!

  • At least 9 pounds, 14 ounces in women with diabetes
  • At least 11 pounds in women without diabetes
  • Weight measurements late in the pregnancy can be imprecise

5. Operative vaginal delivery (forceps or vacuum) is a great alternative!

  • At the completion of their training, 55% of resident physicians did not feel competent to perform a forceps delivery. Physicians need to be trained again!
  • Fewer than 3% of women in whom an operative vaginal delivery has been attempted go on to deliver by cesarean
  • There is no difference in forceps, vacuum or cesarean in term of neonatal morbidity rates.

Percentage of all births that use forceps or vacuum:

1990: 9.0%2005: 4.8%2010: 3.6%
1995: 9.4%2008: 3.9%2011: 3.5%
2000: 6.9%2009: 3.7%2012: 3.4%

6. Induction Timing

  • Before 41 0/7 weeks gestation – should only be performed if there are medical indications
  • Beyond 41 0/7 weeks gestation – should be performed to reduce the risk of cesarean delivery

Less Restrictive Guidelines

In 2010, ACOG also released less restrictive guidelines regarding VBACs.

  • Most women who have had a low transverse caesarean can qualify to attempt a VBAC, and should be allowed to do so
  • 60 – 80% of women who attempt will be successful

ACOG also claims that “continuous labor support” should be the norm rather than the exception in order to decrease the cesarean rate and improve the birth experience for women.

Effects of continuous labor support compared to usual care, measured by “risk ratios” (RR) [13]

[Risk Ratio (RR) – the risk of an event for women receiving continuous support divided by the risk for women receiving usual care. A value of one implies that continuous support had no effect; less than one that the support reduced the risk of the event; more than one that the occurrence of the event increased.]

  • Spontaneous vaginal birth: 1.08 RR
  • Intrapartum analgesia (any type of anesthesia during labor): 0.90 RR
  • Dissatisfaction: 0.69 RR
  • Shorter labors: -0.58 hours
  • Caesarean: 0.78 RR
  • Instrumental vaginal birth (vacuum or forceps-assisted birth): 0.90 RR
  • Regional analgesia (epidural or spinal block): 0.93 RR
  • Baby with a low five-minute APGAR score: 0.69 RR [Appearance (skin color), Pulse (heart rate), Grimace (reflex irritability), Activity (muscle tone), and Respiration] – 1-10 scale test given 5 minutes after birth.

The support was most effective when it was someone who was neither a member of the hospital staff nor a member of the woman’s social network (like a doula).


What’s a Doula?

Umm… what’s a doula? [14]

  • “doula” comes from ancient Greek meaning “a woman who serves”
  • from DONA.org: “a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother before, during and just after birth; or who provides emotional and practical support during the postpartum period”

Two types:

  • Birth Doula
    • helps woman prepare and carry out her birth plans
    • aims to nurture and protect the woman’s birth experience
    • present with the woman throughout labor
    • provides emotional support, physical comfort measures and an objective viewpoint
    • facilitates communication between laboring woman, her partner and care providers
  • Postpartum Doula
    • helps with newborn care, family adjustment, meal prep and some household chores
    • offers education and support on infant feeding and soothing, as well as emotional and physical recovery from birth

What can I do?

  • Talk with your physician about your options and find out about their protocols.
  • If you’ve had a cesarean previously, find a practitioner and hospital allowing VBACs and work with them to see if you’re a candidate.

www.ican-online.org for more info and database

  • Consider a midwife and birthing center for your pregnancy and birth.

https://ourmomentoftruth.com for more info and database

  • Hire a doula.

www.dona.org for more info and database

  • Take control of your birth! Develop a birth plan in advance.

https://americanpregnancy.org for more info

https://www.earthmamaangelbaby.com/free-birth-plan – tool to create your own custom plan


bringing birth back

Sources:

  1. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr60/nvsr60_01.pdf
  2. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr62/nvsr62_09_tables.pdf
  3. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr47/nvs47_18.pdf
  4. https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00036845.htm
  5. https://www.weikert.de/alexandra/who1.html
  6. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr62/nvsr62_09.pdf
  7. ftp://ftp.cdc.gov/pub/Health_Statistics/NCHS/Dataset_Documentation/DVS/natality/UserGuide2012.pdf
  8. https://www.dona.org/mothers/
  9. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/02/19/reducing-cesarean-sections/5608139/ 
  10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3615450/


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

What’s the Total Cost of Online RN to BSN Programs?

Cost of Nursing School

What's the Total Cost of online RN to BSN Program?

The total cost of online RN to BSN programs is the bottom line for deciding which online nursing program is the best fit for you! You should consider all of the costs, such as tuition and fees, location, and what kind of experience you might have as a student there. However, when you are a working RN and are choosing between online schools to earn your BSN, it is just as important to find the total cost of attendance. 



While the location question is out of the way with online schools, none of us are immune to the dreaded question of the total cost. Just as you may have experienced while earning your RN, your BSN degree may require you to purchase specific items. Of course, some of these items improve your overall educational experience. But, other expenditures are essential to get the most out of your education. The following is a list of fees associated with your online RN to BSN program that you should know before you start school shopping. Then, when you are ready to choose your Program, check out our Top 50 most affordable online RN to BSN programs currently available.


What’s The Deal With Online Technology Fees?

As you probably know from paying for services and devices in this high-speed era, convenience is not cheap. Between paying for your phone, computer, and internet, hotspot fees, and maybe even a Wi-Fi booster, you’ve now racked up quite the bill.

Similarly, colleges and universities that can provide online services also incur expenses. To make attending more convenient for students, schools have invested a lot of money into technology and Informational Technology services that make online education possible. In many cases, they have hired instructors and professors specifically trained in this unique methodology. The total cost to nursing students may include technology or distance learning fees per credit hour tuition and miscellaneous material requirements.


Compare Technology Fees As “Apples to Apples”

Some schools charge these technology fees per credit hour plus additional required fees. Other schools roll the technology fee into the cost of tuition. Be sure to familiarize yourself with your chosen program’s total costs. When comparing institutions, consider the itemized expenses included in the published total cost amounts. Since teh format isnot standardized, you may need to put some time into finding the total cost of online RN to BSN programs so you can view them in an apples to apples comparison.

Initially, the thought of charging students for advanced computing and technology may seem unnecessary. Still, when you think about the massive infrastructure that goes into implementing and maintaining such a fast, convenient way to learn such important material, all without needing to come to campus. The value of an online RN to BSN program begins to stand out from their traditional on-campus counterparts.


Additional Nursing Fees

Other fees that apply specifically to nurses are things like textbooks. Students also need lab coats and scrubs for clinical instruction in medical tools such as stethoscopes and watches. In addition, proper shoes, and the coveted nursing pin that shows completion of a course of study, all have to figure in the total cost to the student.

Textbooks and graduation materials are still required. However, an online program can change the amount of other expenses. For example, not needing to wear scrubs to classes, not paying lab fees associated with the on-campus study, and not paying for immunization records that on-campus students pay. Like with the differences in amounts different schools charge for technology fees, these costs can vary greatly. Many students find that second-hand items can reduce some of the total material cost. Additionally, with the advent of eBooks and online publications, textbooks can be acquired at a much lower price point, especially if you are willing to shop around and weigh all of your options.


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

What Kinds of Qualities Should Good Nurses Have?

Qualities of a Good Nurse

What Kinds of Qualities Should Good Nurses Have?

The qualities of a good nurse include flexibility, stability, attention to detail, communication, and most importantly, a desire to help. The truth is not all individuals have the right nurse personality traits. A person’s innate characteristics determine whether they will make a good nurse. The nursing profession has its challenges and the right kind of person will tackle these challenges head-on. Below are the top five qualities of a good nurse.


1. Desire to Help

Nurse personality traits should include a willingness to help others. Nurses are grateful to be of aid in a person’s time of need. Although nurses provide medical care, they are also responsible for giving comfort. Nurses who don’t have compassion will not have the capacity to give high-quality patient care.


2. Superior Communication Skills

Being a good communicator is a must for a nurse. Nurses are typically the facilitator between doctors and patients. They are required to instruct patients on their care in an effective way. In addition, nurses must be able to work with patients and their families to ensure they understand the care options available. Nurses not only need to communicate well with patients but other healthcare staff too. Doctors depend on nurses to keep them on task throughout the day.


3. Emotional Control

Nurses are known for demonstrating grace under pressure. They are consistently exposed to stressful situations and must be able to stay calm at all times. Nurses may see patients suffer daily, so they need a solid emotional foundation. A great nurse will be able to stay strong and also not feel sad or depressed over poor patient outcomes. Instead, an example of the qualities of a nurse leader is to gain hope when witnessing positive patient outcomes instead of focusing on the negative.


Fun Fact

What Kinds of Qualities Should Good Nurses Have?

4. Flexibility

The qualities of a nurse leader should include flexibility. A nurse’s day can look very different from shift to shift. Nurses can’t have a fixed mindset if they want to succeed in their careers. Also, nurses must be flexible with their schedules. Many healthcare facilities require long shifts, weekend hours, and also overnight schedules. If the 9 to 5 life sounds unappealing, then a nursing career may be a great fit.


5. Detail Oriented

A nurse’s ability to pay close attention to detail can be a matter of life or death. Not reading a patient’s chart correctly could have dire consequences. Nurses must remember even the smallest of details for each patient to ensure proper care. Furthermore, nurses spend more time with patients than doctors. When a nurse notices subtle changes in a patient’s condition, this may save the patient’s life.


Do You Have the Qualities of a Good Nurse?

Consider the preceding five qualities of a good nurse before entering the profession. Certain personalities will flourish in a nursing career while others may struggle. Nursing is an extremely rewarding profession both financially and emotionally when a person has the right type of outlook.


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

What is the Job Outlook for Nurses?

Nursing Job Outlook

What is the Job Outlook for Nurses?

The job outlook for nurses is positive for the foreseeable future. Nurses are in-demand across the country and the field is growing fast! When you are evaluating your career opportunities, you want to look into the job outlook or the expectations for growth in your field. The nursing job outlook is positive due to the high rate of growth. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects nursing jobs to grow at 15% over the next ten years. That is higher than the national average for all jobs.



The Nursing Shortage

A key reason the job market for nurses is higher than average is the current shortage of medical professionals. The current shortage of nurses stems from challenges at the educational level. Colleges and universities have limited faculty available to teach students. Many nurses and professionals continue to work in hospitals and clinics, so they are not willing to take on a role as an instructor. That limits the number of new nurses available to take on the challenges of patient care.

Despite the 3.7% growth of enrollment in nursing programs, it is not enough to meet current demands. The shortage is expected to continue in the future due to slow growth in education as well as an increasingly large number of retirees. Many nurses working now are expected to retire within ten years.


Nurses With Specialized Skills

While growth in nursing is high, specialized skills are expected to have a higher rate of growth. Nurse practitioners, nurse midwives, and nurse anesthetists’ positions are expected to grow at a rate of 31% over the next ten years. That projected growth is much higher than the average for all industries and higher than the average for nursing. The job outlook for nurse anesthetist positions and similar specialized skills suggest that advancement opportunities for nurses are expected to grow within ten years.

Job growth in nursing informatics is expected to grow at 26%, which is also much higher than the national average and the average for registered nurses. A key reason for the increased growth in informatics is the rapid advances in technology. Medical facilities will need professionals to handle the increased use of technological tools.


Jobs for LPN’s

The LPN job outlook is also expected to grow at a high rate. A licensed practical nurse works under the supervision of a registered nurse or a doctor to assist with patient care. The work is expected to grow at 12% over ten years, which is also higher than the average for all industries. The advantage of working as an LPN is the opportunity to start your career while you are working on your bachelor’s degree to become a registered nurse. You can gain experience that helps with your long-term career goals.


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

What are Nursing Shortage Solutions?

Nursing Shortage Solutions

What are Nursing Shortage Solutions?

Nursing Shortage Solutions consist of new degree programs, student financial assistance, more nurse educators, and travel nursing roles. Skeptics argue that the nursing shortage hype is nothing more than a nursing shortage myth.

Unfortunately, these disbelievers fail to see the truth about nursing shortage statistics. The reality is that the reemerging nursing shortage is a very real phenomenon, one that threatens American healthcare at its root. Shortages not only affect regular RNs but some of the most in-demand, high-paying nursing positions as well.


RN Shortage


Nursing Shortage Solutions

Many states have enacted Legislation to Address Nurse Staffing and Quality of Patient Care. For instance, California became the first state to recognize the need to monitor the average nurse-to-patient ratio in hospitals at a state level. In 1999, the state passed into law a state-mandated minimum nurse-to-patient ratio for acute care divisions in a hospital setting. To date, it is the only legislation of its kind. 

However, the federal government had already taken the lead by enacting legislation (42CFR 482.23(b)) that mandates hospitals with Medicare certification to maintain adequate staffing levels to meet each patient’s needs as the need arises. These measures are part of combatting nurse burnout as well.

After the passage of the California legislation, a growing momentum began to seriously consider similar legislation across the country. To date, there are 14 states and the District of Columbia that have set forth official rules and regulations to address this ongoing, concerning issue.

  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Illinois
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Ohio
  • Oregon
  • Rhode Island
  • Texas
  • Vermont
  • Washington
  • Washington, DC

Massachusetts and California are the only two states that have revised legislation that mandates nurse-patient ratios. Massachusetts varies from California in that the nurse-ratio requirements have some flexibility, whereas California’s legislation does not.

Other approaches to nursing shortage solutions include efforts to:

  • Meet or exceed the average nurse-to-patient ratio in hospitals and other healthcare-related facilities
  • Expand education facilities and programs as well as improve Medical Facilities Management Systems to address the staffing shortages in healthcare that create unnecessary patient risk
  • Determine ways in which nurse staffing ratios and patient outcomes are optimized
  • Attracting travel nurses for short-term relief

Nursing Studies

Confirming a Connection Between a Nursing Shortage and Patient CareSeveral years ago, The Lancet released a study that revealed that a simple 10% increase in nurses who held a bachelor’s degree could reduce patient mortality by as much as 7%.

The year before, the BMJ Quality & Safety Journal released a study. It revealed a direct correlation existed between a nursing staff’s high patient loads and the readmission rate at the medical facility.

At about the same time, the American Journal of Infection Control (AJIC) published a study. The AJIC paper confirmed a connection between high patient loads/nurse burnout to increased infections in surgical sites.

Health Services Research (HSR) issued a study that concluded that reduced patient-to-nurse ratios were associated with lowered mortality rates of patients.

Nursing shortage skeptics are finding it increasingly difficult to debate the effects of inadequate nursing staffing and nurse burnout. This growing body of research regarding the impact a nurse shortage has on the elderly, low-income populations, underserved urban communities, and patients from every walk of life.

Government and medical policymakers have more than enough evidence that confirms how positively impactful it would be to prepare an increasing amount of registered nurses who hold baccalaureate nursing degrees.


Nursing Staffing & Quality of Patient Care

As far back as 2007, the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality (AHRQ), an agency within the Department of Health and Human Services, shared their conclusions from their study entitled Nursing Staffing & Quality of Patient Care.

  • A shortage of nurses, combined with an increased patient load, creates a real challenge to quality patient care.
  • Better-staffed nursing departments mitigate mortality rates in hospitals.
  • Understaffed nursing departments negatively impacted a patient’s safety.

Check Out the Most Nurse-Friendly Hospitals in the US


What to Expect in 2020 and Beyond

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the nursing profession is one of three industries that are anticipated to grow at a 9% pace through the year 2030. The nearly 450,000 additional nursing jobs to be needed are the result of the industry implementing net staffing regulations and the mass exodus of baby-boomer nurses set to retire by then.


States with Shortages

Additionally, the BLS continues to anticipate a nurse staffing imbalance through the year 2025. The nursing shortage article further advises that the lack of qualified licensed nurses will be most prevalent in the western and southern portions of the United States. The projected nursing shortage will adversely impact rural hospitals the most.

Imbalanced portions of the states of Florida, California, and Georgia have extensive aging populations, plus a reduced number of newly licensed nurses applying for jobs in these states. Together these two forces create critical nursing shortages that adversely impact patient care and nurse burnout.


What is Being Done to Solve the Nursing Shortage?

In response to the onslaught of nurse shortages over the past century, many states, the nursing/medical community, and the nurse education arena, have initiated significant efforts to discover how to deal with short-staffing in nursing.

The following examples are just a few of the nursing shortage solutions implemented over the past few years that meet the demand for nurses in the future. Nursing schools have begun to partner with private support channels in an effort to provide nursing shortage solutions that will increase the number of nurses admitted each year. 


Finanacial Incentives 

Below are a few of the financial incentives that encourage qualified individuals to enter the profession.

Minnesota’s Veterans Administration Health Care

Minnesota’s Veterans Administration Health Care organization has partnered with the University of Minnesota by funding efforts for nurses who agree to teach after they have earned their degrees.

Johnson & Johnson (J&J)

Mega-conglomerate Johnson & Johnson (J&J) maintains an active campaign that encourages students to become professional nurses. J&J’s Campaign for Nursing’s Future offers a multimedia approach to polishing the image of the nursing industry.

American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN)

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) contributes its resources to learning how to fix the nursing shortage. In 2010, the AACN launched an industry-wide centralized location for students to apply for admission to a nursing school.

The title of the AACN’s program is Nursing CAS. The fundamental purpose of the program is to make sure that all vacant spots in nursing education programs are filled to capacity, thus maximizing each program’s student capacity. During the calendar year 2018 along, the Nursing CAS identified nearly 50,000 vacant positions in the country’s nursing programs.

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF)

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) released a narrative regarding the very real need to focus on the expansion of educational facilities to accommodate the country’s ever-expanding demand for nursing professionals. The narrative was released in 2010 and was entitled Expanding America’s Capacity to Educate Nurses.

RWJF’s news release disclosed more than ten partnerships that are innovatively addressing shortages for nursing professionals and nurse educators. Industry experts advise it would be a great advantage to require newly licensed Registered Nurses to attain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree ten years after obtaining the original nursing licensure. This approach will likely stack the deck full of nursing professionals who hold either an undergraduate nursing degree or a graduate nursing degree.

In addition to these large-scale efforts, many medical and healthcare facilities also implement programs that can modify nursing schedules to accommodate the challenging schedule of a professional nurse who is attending school at night or over the weekend. Additionally, vacant nursing positions in understaffed healthcare facilities have different incentives to encourage qualified nurses to apply.


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

Best Montana Online RN to BSN Nursing Schools

RN to BSN in Montana

Best Montana Online RN to BSN Nursing Schools

Montana online RN to BSN programs help nurses continue their education, advance their nursing careers, and increase their salaries! Big Sky Country, the unofficial nickname for Montana, sums up the state’s beauty. Montana has some of the most impressive landscapes in the US. Where else can you find 77 mountain ranges, prairies, and badlands? So it’s not a surprise that Montanans are some of the healthiest residents in the county. Montana is also affordable, with a low cost of living and low property taxes. In addition, there are many unique cities and towns and many employment opportunities.

If you haven’t guessed already, Montana is a great place to start a nursing career or move if you are already a nurse! Nurses can find employment in all areas of Montana, and the average nursing salary is good compared to the cost of living. In Montana, becoming a licensed nurse involves getting a quality education and successfully passing a state-mandated nursing exam.


How We Ranked The Best Online Nursing Programs In Montana

The TopRNtoBSN editors found accredited nursing schools offering online or hybrid RN to BSN programs in Montana. We ranked the programs based on cost, reputation, and salary data. 


1. Montana Technological University

Montana Tech Univ

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing Completion, Post-Licensure is the Montana Technological University online RN to BSN degree. Admission to the program is open to licensed RNs who have already earned an ASN and want to continue their education. Montana Technological University offers the best online RN to BSN nursing programs for students who wish to advance their careers. The university provides nursing students with the most advanced skills possible over an online learning platform. They also have access to the latest technological advancements in the nursing field. With an online RN to BSN degree, you can begin to take the first steps toward building a long and rewarding career.

Montana Technological University is well-known for providing students with online learning programs that are just as good or better than those taught in the classroom. Faculty members offer encouragement and support as students move through educational challenges that they may face as they build a nursing career. The university is continually working to provide the most advanced degree programs in the area.

Montana Technological University is a public university first established in 1900 as the Montana State School of Mines. In 1994 the school became part of the sixteen-campus Montana University System (MSU). The Montana Tech campus is in Butte, Montana, accredited through the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).

Program: Online RN to BSN

Visit the program


2. University of Providence

Univ of Providence

The University of Providence offers a fully online RN-BSN degree through its School of Health Professions. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Degree Completion Program is three semesters that students complete in one year. Nurses with an Associate Degree in Nursing with an active RN license are eligible for the RN to BSN program. Before the start of the program, there is one required on-campus day. After classes begin, the instruction is online, with one live or synchronous conference class every other week. Cohorts start in August and January of each year. In addition, currently employed Providence St. Joseph Health (PSJH) nurses may be eligible for nursing scholarships through the hospital.

The University of Providence offers students the best online RN to BSN nursing programs designed to enhance their skills and improve their ability to provide hands-on care. Enrolling in an online program allows students to pursue their education and build a career of which they can be proud. In addition, with an online RN to BSN degree, a graduate will be able to explore new challenges and continue to provide quality hands-on care to their patients.

The University of Providence is a Catholic institution located in Great Falls, Montana. The Sisters of Providence founded it in 1932 and now has two schools; the School of Liberal Arts and Science and the School of Health Professions. The school is small with just under 500 students. But the nursing school boasts 200 undergrads and is the main artery of the school. The University of Providence RN to BSN Nursing program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). 

Program: Online RN to BSN

Visit the program


3. Salish Kootenai College 

Salish Kootenai College

Salish Kootenai College offers some of the best nursing programs in the northwestern United States. SKC Nursing offers a BSN completion program for licensed RNs who already have earned an Associate’s Degree in Nursing (ASN). The online RN-BSN completion program builds upon associate degree coursework to expand RN Salish Kootenai College practice’s level, complexity, and scope. RN-BSN students enter the program at the upper-division level and should be able to complete the program in 6 quarters part-time. The nursing programs offered by the college are committed to providing students with all of the necessary skills they need to deliver quality care to the patients they serve. By enrolling in an online RN to BSN degree program, students can continue their education without leaving their job or feeling like they are ignoring their families or patients.

Salish Kootenai College is one of many Native American colleges dedicated to providing tribal and non-tribal members with an unrivaled level of education in the area. Although the college is retiring its Associate’s degree in Nursing program, it plans to emphasize its BSN and higher degree programs so that students are guaranteed the best possible education. Every student who enrolls in the online degree programs will receive the same quality education as if they chose to attend class on campus.

Program: Online RN to BSN

Visit the program


4. Montana State University Northern

Montana State University Northern

The Montana State University-Northern online RN to BSN nursing program is one of the best in Montana. The program includes the skills, knowledge, and abilities that an RN must have to be effective and efficient within the workplace. They are also allowed to learn leadership skills that they can use when they take on more and more responsibility. With an online RN to BSN degree program, every student receives what they need to thrive in a fast-paced, patient-focused environment.

Montana State University-Northern offers online programs over a state-of-the-art learning platform that allows for maximum interaction and accessibility. The class sizes are small, and students have almost immediate access to faculty members and valuable student resources. The university offers award-winning degree programs that give students a chance to fine-tune the focus of their careers. By learning over an online platform, they have the flexibility to find work while they are still in school.

Program: Online RN to BSN

Visit the program


5. Montana State University Billings

The online RN to BSN degree at Montana State University Billings gives students a chance to enroll in one of the best degree programs available. Each nursing degree includes the skills and knowledge needed to perform the required duties of a nurse. Students who earn their online RN to BSN degree program have the flexibility within their schedule to pursue both their education and work. They can move forward in both areas without fear of limitation.

Montana State University Billings offers degree programs that are technologically advanced and designed to provide students with the most accurate and up-to-date information possible. Students can communicate with faculty members when challenges arise and rely on them for support and guidance. The university takes great pride in providing valuable resources to their graduates that they can continue to use long after they graduate.

Program: Online RN to BSN

Visit the program


How Do I Become An RN In Montana?

How Do I Become An RN In Montana?

Becoming an RN in Montana involves getting a top-quality education and successfully passing a state-mandated nursing exam to obtain a valid license. However, your education does not stop after you become an RN. To maintain a valid RN license, you must complete a specific number of continuing education hours each year. This helps keep you up to date on all of the latest trends and gives you insight into new concepts and advancements coming in the future. It also reinforces some of the more valuable ideas and lessons we tend to forget about as time goes on.

Once you have your degree, you need to gain experience to back up the information. The goal is to find a job that you enjoy. Becoming an RN is a great way to work toward a brighter future. It’s up to you to determine what path you want to follow. Do you want to work with patients, or do you want to specialize in a specific type of nursing? You can specialize in many different areas ranging from pediatric care to trauma or emergency care.

Nurse Resources in Montana:


How Is The Job Market For Nursing In Montana?

The job market for nursing is wide open. Nursing jobs are available in all areas of the state. Rural areas need nurses just as severely as the larger cities. All types of health care facilities are constantly looking for nurses in almost every specialization. General care nurses can work in doctors’ offices, schools, and hospitals. Emergency and trauma care nurses are in high demand throughout the state and can easily find employment with ambulatory or lifeline services. Choose where you would like to work and start applying for jobs.

Most facilities are eager to hire nurses who have just graduated because they want to provide additional training through a hands-on working environment. In addition, nurses looking for experience in specific areas can apply for jobs and then return to school and receive additional training in those areas. This allows broadening of their horizons and lets them move forward at a much faster pace.


How Much Do Nurses Make In Montana?

Your earning potential as a nurse in Montana is what you make it. When first starting, you may be able to earn anywhere from $47,000 to $56,000 yearly. The more experience you gain over the next few years will give you the potential to almost double your earning power. This is especially true if you return to school and focus on a specialization. Your earning potential can jump from almost $100,000 to $120,000 per year by adding a specialized focus area.

The key to how much you earn will have a lot to do with where you choose to live. Living in a larger community will provide you with an opportunity to make a higher wage. More extensive facilities will have more financial resources to pay their employees. Therefore, many nurses choose to take a lower wage and work in a smaller town simply because of their rewards from the patients they serve. Many people who choose nursing put patient care above the amount of money they can earn. Nurses are the link to patient care that adds the personal touch.


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

Cultural Competence In Nursing

Cultural Competency

Cultural competence in nursing is having the skillset, attitude, and knowledge necessary to care for patients from diverse backgrounds.

Cultural Competence In Nursing

Diversity is an important issue across all industries including nursing. Historically, nurses have been predominately white and female, according to census data reviewed by the American Journal of Nursing. We need diversity in healthcare for a number of reasons, including the ability of nurses to interact effectively with all patients. Since nursing diversity is still an issue today, a number of initiatives attract more men and minorities to the field of nursing.


Diversity in Nursing

In the field of nursing, there has become a call for nurses to be as diverse as the patients they serve. Nurses from different backgrounds will help develop a better understanding of what can impact a person’s overall well-being. There are a number of studies to improve cultural competence in nursing. According to the Journal for the Critical Care Nurse, demonstrating cultural competence is extremely important for critical care nurses who are providing care in high-stress environments. Nurses must have an understanding of different cultures. Then they know how to show respect when decisions are made that don’t always line up with mainstream healthcare practices.

In addition to attracting different cultures to the field of nursing, healthcare agencies can take steps to train current staff on how to provide culturally competent care. Training programs teach nurses about the expectations of patients from diverse backgrounds. For instance, knowing about the customs and communication rules for different ethnicities can assist nurses in providing the best care possible for each individual.


Nursing Diversity Needed

Nursing Diversity and Cultural Competence In Nursing

Men in Nursing

The American Association for Men in Nursing has started a campaign to increase the presence of males in the nursing field by at least 20% by the year 2020. The call for more male nurses comes from patients who feel more comfortable with healthcare providers of the same gender. As an example, a male patient may feel more comfortable with a male nurse who needs to insert a catheter or change a bedpan. The number of men in nursing has steadily risen since the 1970s. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, only 2.7% of registered nurses were male in 1970. In 2011, 9.6% of all registered nurses are male.


Minorities and LGBT in Nursing

Another part of improving diversity in nursing is increasing the number of minorities in the field. Out of the three million plus nurses currently employed in the United States, approximately 25% come from racial or ethnic minorities. Registered nurses have an even lower percentage of minorities with only 13% of the population. Initiatives like the Campaign for Action are making strides toward increasing the number of minorities who become nurses. The non-profit organization provides resources to prospective nurses who are minorities with incentives such as educational grants and scholarships.

Diversity in healthcare also includes the employment of LGBT nurses. LGBT individuals face stigma at every stage of their lives. With more LGBT nurses, the hope is patients will feel less shame and stigma when seeking out care.

Although diversity in nursing has not made as many strides as anticipated, the number of individuals from different backgrounds has increased substantially in response to changing societal norms.


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

Nursing in Maryland

Maryland Nursing

Maryland

Maryland nursing information for RN to BSN education, nurse licensing, and job and salary outlook for nurses in Maryland.



Nursing Programs in Maryland

The medical field is one of the most important fields; without medical care, society as a whole would not have as good of a chance for survival. One of the most important parts of the medical field is nurses. While nurses may not perform activities that doctors do, they are still a vital part of the care provided by medical facilities. Due to the fact that the medical field is constantly growing, nurses may want to consider earning their Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing. Fortunately for nurses in Maryland, RN to BSN programs in Maryland can easily be found. Furthermore, RN to BSN programs in Maryland come in numerous different forms.


BSN in Maryland

When nurses participate in BSN programs in Maryland, they reap many benefits. For one thing, earning their BSN can help with increased job security, career advancement, and providing peace of mind. While nurses working full time may find the idea daunting, BSN programs in Maryland are offered not only in the traditional classroom style but there are also in RN to BSN online programs. RN to BSN programs offer nurses who are working full time an excellent alternative and a way to earn their degree on a flexible schedule. Of course, those preferring a traditional style of teaching should stick with local institutions instead of distance learning.


Maryland RN to BSN

In addition to coming in a variety of forms, RN to BSN programs in Maryland are also affordable; RN to BSN online programs are often less expensive than the classroom. However, nurses will find that earning their BSN is worth the investment.


Nursing License in MD

The Maryland Board of Nursing issues a Maryland nursing license. The Maryland Board of Nursing is a member of the NLC the national Nurse Licensure Compact that encompasses 31 states. The state requires nursing professionals wanting to obtain a license to submit fingerprints and pass a criminal background check before they can take the national nursing licensing exam.

To obtain permission to sit for the national nursing exam, the NCLEX, an RN license candidate must have graduated from one of the many nursing schools in Maryland that have been approved by Maryland’s Board of Nursing (BON). Some approved schools offer hybrid programs in addition to the more traditional programs. Some nursing students can opt for accelerated nursing programs in Maryland.

When graduating from one of the approved nursing schools in Maryland, nursing graduates have been appropriately prepared to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination(NCLEX). And, once a student graduates from one of the approved schools and passes the NCLEX, they have met the qualifications to receive a License.

Once a nursing professional receives their license, they are responsible for making sure their Maryland Board of nursing renewal is completed in accordance with Maryland’s requirements. The Maryland Board of Nursing license renewal instructions is available on the BON’s website.


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

The Growth of Online Nursing Programs

Growth of Online Nursing Programs

The Growth of Online Nursing Programs

The growth of online nursing programs have created affordable and flexible degree options for many nurses to earn a BSN or MSN. The emergence of online education has played a vital role in helping to fill the shortage of nurses needed in the US.



How Serious Is The Nursing Shortage?

America needs more nurses. But, how serious is the situation? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment projections for 2020-2030 indicate a need for 194,500 replacements nurses in the workforce every year! Never before have RNs, LPNs, and general nurse practitioners been more in-demand. One way colleges have responded to the desperate needs of the present, and future nursing community has been the development of online educational programs with practical clinical experiences. 


Why Is There A Nursing Shortage?

What’s causing the shortage? There is not just one reason for the nursing shortage. First, the rise in specialized health care needs has changed the needs of the healthcare community. In addition, the baby boom generation is wading into retirement with the largest older population this country has ever seen. Also, recent reforms in healthcare will give millions of people access to the system. Finally, the median age of nurses is high, with over half of the current nursing workforce close to retirement.


Future Need For Nuring Professionals

Below are projections of future needs in the profession.

growth of online nursing programs - job growth

Given the promising job outlook for nursing professionals, it’s not surprising that online programs for nursing degrees have grown significantly over the past few years. Of course, colleges have been moving their nursing programs online for almost as long as online education has existed. However, schools are doing so now at a faster rate. For example, the number of fully online RN to BSN programs in the US has grown by more than a third in the last few years, according to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN).


Online Nursing Degrees

Although almost all nursing programs today blend online with practical experience, the AACN quickly acknowledges the growing importance of going digital. In some colleges and universities that offer nursing courses online, lectures have been eliminated or replaced with interactive seminars. Some online nursing programs, for example, provide interactive workshops to students in all nursing courses. Seminars have multiple uses. First, they provide a platform for faculty to present information not yet available in a textbook. Instructors also use them to address topics that students have expressed an interest in or answer questions on course content. Finally, the use of online seminars helps learners make connections among readings, online discussion, and written assignments.

The instructor promotes these connections by clarifying concepts or helping learners think more deeply about a particular issue. Through this process, learners don’t simply memorize material for the sake of later “regurgitating” it on an exam. Instead, they must demonstrate mastery of the material, which faculty evaluates based on student posts on interactive discussion boards and written papers. In short, distance education provides a more profound cognitive exercise.


Types Of Online Nursing Degree Programs

The current types of online nursing degrees offered by online colleges are as follows. In addition, all the following programs are at accredited schools.

growth of online nursing programs - schools

Once you earn that online degree you’ve worked so hard to attain, the monetary rewards can be substantial. The figures below represent average salaries. Keep in mind neither the highs nor the starter salaries are shown in the figure. The wages and the need for qualified nurses have fueled the field’s growth, and online opportunities are leading the way.

growth of online nursing programs - salary


Online Nursing Degree Program Accreditation

Online courses from an accredited online nursing program are just as rigorous as you would expect traditional courses to be. Do not expect earning your nursing degree online to be any easier than in a brick-and-mortar institution. Online colleges and traditional colleges have the same process for accreditation. They both must meet the criteria set by independent accrediting bodies to receive recognition by that body.

One last word of caution. Ensure the online nursing program you’re considering has accreditation from one of the two Department of Education-recognized nursing accreditors listed below. These Department of Education recognized nursing program accreditors that count. In addition, it makes you eligible for student loans, tuition reimbursement programs, and many types of scholarships and grants.

• The National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC)
• The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).


Is An Online Nursing Degree Worth It?

Online nursing degrees are legitimate if you earn them through an online learning institution that is accredited. Conduct plenty of research before you enroll in a school or program. This way, you reassure your future employer that you received both a quality education and the training, knowledge, and skills needed to excel in the nursing field. And, by the way, this also will mean you didn’t waste several years of time and money to receive a fake degree that most employers will likely not accept.


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

Can I Find Employment with an Online BSN?

An Online Accelerated BSN

Can I Find A Job With an Online Accelerated BSN?

An online BSN is for professional nurses seeking an exciting career change into stable employment and a rewarding field. As an RN degree holder, an accelerated bachelor’s of science in nursing degree can take as little as 11 months with an online accelerated BSN program. I know you are thinking “but what’s the catch” right? No catch, this is totally true!



Jobs With An Accelerated BSN

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, there is a 9% projected increase in the need for nurses between 2020 and 2030. That is great news for those looking for employment in the field of nursing! Because of this upward trend in need, employers are eagerly hiring qualified and skilled nurses regardless of the pace at which they received those qualifications. In fact, many hiring managers at clinics and hospitals find the well-rounded nature of Online Accelerated BSN degree graduates appealing. If you are still deciding on which program is right for you, check out info comparing an Accelerated BSN and a Traditional BSN Program.

Regarding students who are seeking a second bachelor’s degree in nursing, employers see the versatility, experience, and non-traditional characteristics that these students bring to the second degree in nursing as a valuable asset. Having experience in other fields can also bring a unique lens to stressful situations that nurses often face in their day today. This not being “your first rodeo” often means that online accelerated BSN students have the kind of intellectual stamina that makes careers in the medical field a struggle for many others.


Second Degree, Seeking Salary and Solid Employment

Second-degree holders are typically older, clearer about ways to best handle themselves under unpredictable conditions, more worldly, and more focused on getting the most out of their degree. From an employer’s perspective, this also means that a new hire who has an online accelerated BSN degree is likely to be more loyal and reliable, value their opportunity to make a difference and be more clear that nursing is exactly what they want to be doing.

Employers have even said that these nurses do better at the clerical parts of the job, like typing up reports and charting, the tedious things that many people find annoying or unimportant. Online accelerated BSN graduates are so sought after in fact, that many hospitals have set up agreements with colleges offering tuition reimbursement and other incentives upon graduation for top-notch, second-degree nurses.


Online BSN Accelerated

These kinds of perks make the science-intensive online accelerated BSN a smart move for bachelor’s degree holders who want a little more out of their professional life and a little more out of their salary too. Nurses who graduate from an online accelerated BSN program can also expect to make between $45,000 and $75,000 annually, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Additionally, this range is likely to increase along with the need for more nurses over the next several years.

With your foot already in the door of your degree, and your years of experience increasing, you should expect a great salary at the height of this need. If this job stability and the salary range is something you are interested in, and you already have your RN with a 2-year degree, or you have a bachelor’s in a non-nursing field, what are you waiting for? Browse our ranking of the Top 15 Online Accelerated BSN programs. Yes, have no fear, you will find employment with an Online BSN degree!


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

What are the Highest-Paying States for Nurses?

Highest-Paying States

The highest paying states for nurses offer a great salary as well as other benefits for nurses looking for the best place to be a nurse! With the high nursing demand, nursing students want to know the best place to be a nurse in the world. With the right education and the right specializations, many nurses have their pick of the highest-paying nursing jobs. Types of nursing jobs and salaries vary from one state to the next. With a few exceptions, the best places to be a nurse are often the same places that have the nursing shortfalls mentioned above. Some of these states offer incentives for incoming nurses because they want to make their states appealing to new care providers. These incentives include high pay and excellent benefits. Furthermore, some nursing schools in these states have great scholarships and financial aid programs.


Popular Cities for Nursing Jobs


Highest Paying States for Nurse Practitioners

The best states for nurse practitioners and RNs include some of the highest-paying jobs. Some of the highest paying nurse jobs come from these states:

  • California has an average RN salary of $102,700
  • Hawaii has an average RN salary of $96,990
  • DC has an average RN salary of $90,910
  • Massachusetts has an average RN salary of $89,330
  • Oregon has an average RN salary of $88,770

You may have noticed that California, which has the biggest need for new nurses, has the highest-paying nursing jobs. Some of the other high-need states also tend to pay very well. Alaska lands at #6 on the list, while New Jersey lands at #9. South Carolina and Georgia both fall toward the middle, providing a very comfortable pay level for new nurses. The outlier, unfortunately, is South Dakota. As mentioned above, in spite of having one of the biggest needs for nurses, South Dakota offers the worst average pay for nurses in the US.


Other Benefits in the Highest Paying States

When it comes to the best states for Nurse Practitioners, you can find benefits other than excellent pay. In fact, you can find great benefits for all sorts of nurses. While there’s nothing wrong with searching for the highest-paying nurse jobs or the highest-paid nurses in the world, you should also consider other factors. As mentioned above, other factors matter. Some states offer nurses autonomy, benefits, and protections against burnout. These states include many places in the northwest, northeast, and southwest. Alaska, which has a high need for nurses, falls among them. Other beneficial states include Washington, Oregon, Rhode Island, Washington DC, Arizona, and New Mexico. Many other states are working toward granting nurses more work-related autonomy and other benefits. Authorities from these states are hoping to entice new nurses to work in their states. Keep an eye on nursing news in the future to see upcoming changes.


Best Paying Specialties For Nurses

Finally, when considering the best places for nurses, keep in mind that certain specialties make more money than others. Here are some of the highest averages based on specialty.

  • Nurse anesthetist: $157, 690
  • Psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner: $102,000
  • Certified nurse midwife: $96,970
  • Nurse practitioner: $95,350
  • Pediatric nurse: $89,000
  • Critical care nurse: $80,000
  • Gerontological nurse practitioner: $64,906

Of course, you should consider more than pay when it comes to a nursing career. Specializing in something that you’re not passionate about is a recipe for quick burnout and resentment. However, if you have a passion or even an interest in any of the specialties listed above, you should absolutely pursue the one that interests you the most.


Related:

Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

How Much is a Nurse Salary?

How Much do Nurses Make?

How Much is a Nurse Salary?
How Much is a Nurse Salary?

A nurse salary can vary greatly depending on the level of education, experience, specialization, and also geographic location. The decision to work as a nurse means you will have opportunities in a variety of industries. The challenge is identifying the wage that applies to your specialization and clarifying the range of salaries based on location and education level. While you can expect to earn more as a nurse as your education level increases, you should also expect some variation in income based on your locality and state.


How Much is a Nurse Salary?

What is the Average Nurse Salary?

Before you evaluate the expectations for your specialized skills, you want a general idea of what do nurses make on average. The average salary for a registered nurse across the country is around $68,500 per year; however, the average pay for a nurse also depends on your state. The salary range for a registered nurse on average is between $57,000 and $102,000 per year. The different levels of nursing and salaries impact the exact pay you may expect for your role. You should also keep in mind that the average salary may exceed your starting salary as a nurse. New nurses can expect slightly lower pay due to the lack of work experience.

Although salary ranges for nurses by state vary widely, you should also consider the education level of a nurse. The average nurse practitioner salary is higher than the average salary for a nurse due to the higher level of education and training. Other specialized nurses may also earn more than the average salary for a nurse due to their higher level of education and specialized skills.


How Much do Nurse Practitioners Make?

The salary of a nurse practitioner depends on the state and their level of education. Since you can become a nurse practitioner in some states with a master’s degree, the salary range you can expect will differ based on your education. If you obtain a doctor of nursing practice, then you may earn a higher salary than the average. The average salary for a nurse practitioner is roughly $107,000 across the nation. The salary range for a nurse practitioner is between $78,000 and $150,000 per year. You can expect a wide array of salary options based on your state and your level of experience. An experienced nurse practitioner will usually earn more when compared to a new graduate.


Is it Worth It to be a Nurse Midwife?

The nursing degree salary for a nurse-midwife also depends on the location and level of education of the individual. Generally, a nurse-midwife obtains a master’s degree and a certification as a nurse-midwife before providing care to patients. The national average salary for the specialized nursing professional is around $102,000 per year. The range of salaries for nurse-midwife is roughly $51,000 to $133,000 per year.


What is a Nurse Informatics Salary?

Nurses who specialize in informatics make an average salary of roughly $81,000 per year. The growing field in nursing has a wide range of potential salaries in different states, which range from $49,000 to $87,000 per year.


Genetics Nursing Pay

If you decide to pursue genetics nursing, then you can expect a pay rate that is slightly higher than the average salary for a registered nurse with a bachelor’s degree. On average, a genetics nurse makes $62,000 per year across the country. The salary range for a genetics nurse is between roughly $43,000 and $92,000 per year.


Nurse Anesthetist Salary

nurse anesthetist is a lucrative area of nursing due to the high level of education required for the work and the role the nurse plays in inpatient care. The average salary for a certified nurse anesthetist is roughly $157,000 per year. The salary range for a CRNA is between roughly $105,000 and $242,000 per year.

Nurses have a wide array of salary potential. The key to making more as a nurse is gaining specialized skills and education that allows you to take on specific roles in a hospital, clinic, or research position.


Related:


Sandra Janowicz
Author

Keeley Jones
Registered Nurse

Carrie Sealey-Morris
Editor-in-Chief

What Is A BSN Degree?