If we make BSN the entry level degree, we should be paid more

  1. 9
    First, I do not want to challenge nurses with several years of clinical experience that are ADN or diploma trained nurses or those nurses that graduated recently with a ADN, and I do not want to challenge anyone by saying that there is a difference between the ADN versus the BSN prepared nurse.

    There is a push for all nurses to be BSN prepared or for ADNs to achieve their BSN; however, there is no increase in wages for the majority of those with their BSN or those going from an ADN to a BSN. I find that as a workforce, we do not understand our worth. Why do we need the BSN as it costs more and it has no pay benefits. Students that have an ADN from a community college have less student loans, and they make the same a student that has a BSN; however, the BSN student has increased student debt with no increased monetary income to show for their degree.

    I challenge the nursing workforce to acknowledge our value as a profession, and demand an increase in pay if we are to have a BSN. The current yearly income of a nurse is based on the costs of an ADN level of education; however, it does not match the cost of a BSN cost of education. If I am required or it is preferred that I have my BSN, I need to be paid accordingly. I do not practice nursing strictly for the income, but I do appreciate putting a dollar value on the work I do.

    Thoughts?
    himilayaneyes, NeoNatMom, OC_An Khe, and 6 others like this.
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  4. 4
    Quote from runningcrazy
    First, I do not want to challenge nurses with several years of clinical experience that are ADN or diploma trained nurses or those nurses that graduated recently with a ADN, and I do not want to challenge anyone by saying that there is a difference between the ADN versus the BSN prepared nurse. There is a push for all nurses to be BSN prepared or for ADNs to achieve their BSN; however, there is no increase in wages for the majority of those with their BSN or those going from an ADN to a BSN. I find that as a workforce, we do not understand our worth. Why do we need the BSN as it costs more and it has no pay benefits. Students that have an ADN from a community college have less student loans, and they make the same a student that has a BSN; however, the BSN student has increased student debt with no increased monetary income to show for their degree. I challenge the nursing workforce to acknowledge our value as a profession, and demand an increase in pay if we are to have a BSN. The current yearly income of a nurse is based on the costs of an ADN level of education; however, it does not match the cost of a BSN cost of education. If I am required or it is preferred that I have my BSN, I need to be paid accordingly. I do not practice nursing strictly for the income, but I do appreciate putting a dollar value on the work I do. Thoughts?
    Let's make a country wide push for this; starting with AN!
  5. 11
    OP makes a very sound argument. BTW, this is the same one that is used by physicians - in order to justify paying NPs less for the same services.

    But the truth is - there is less money available these days because of shrinking healthcare reimbursement. It isn't even a 'zero-sum' game any more, it is 'less than zero' as organizations are facing an unprecedented decline in volumes at the same time that reimbursement changes are kicking in. The logical outcome - if nursing salaries are forced upward - is that organizations will have to cut the number of RN positions and stretch RN staff with unlicensed 'nurse extenders'. I'm not supporting this - just pointing out the obvious. Approximately 42,000 health care jobs have been lost since January!!! And downsizing continues throughout the nation.

    I support BSN entry for acute care. At this time, we don't have sufficient evidence that more BSN staff produce better outcomes in non-acute settings.
    NeoNatMom, Jessy_RN, Cammy17, and 8 others like this.
  6. 8
    Why does everyone assume that the only way to get an ADN is through a "community college?" I got mine from a major 4-year university. They offered all levels of nursing degrees, except the diploma.
    lilsnfrn, MauraRN, BeccaC623, and 5 others like this.
  7. 12
    I agree that BSN's should get paid more, although that's very unlikely. We've not only willingly given employers BSN Nurses for free, we've enthusiastically given them something for free. Even worse, when you consider the relatively short average career span of a Nurse, and the additional cost of BSN, we're taking a pay cut of usually a few thousand a year to give employers BSN nurses, so it's even worse than free.
  8. 2
    Quote from MunoRN
    I agree that BSN's should get paid more.
    *** Considering they aren't qualified to do anything that an ADN isn't qualified to do I disagree. Besides the BSN is just giving the hospital money, as you pointed out.
    In my view it is perfectly understandable why hospitals would prefer to hire BSN grads. It's all about the money. Recruiting and training nurses is expensive. Providing decent wages and benefits to nurses is also expensive. Hiring BSN grads means less recruiting, salary, benefits, and training costs.
    Nurse Leigh and Nurseknowsit like this.
  9. 17
    Quote from runningcrazy
    The current yearly income of a nurse is based on the costs of an ADN level of education; however, it does not match the cost of a BSN cost of education.
    Actually, it's based on neither -- it's based on what the market will bear. There was a thread here quite a while back about Mass General (I think) offering a new grad ICU training program at a ridiculously low hourly wage (in return for some great education, contacts, and the possibility of a permanent job at MGH when you completed the program). The program had scads of applicants. There is great variety in nursing wages around the country, reflecting the cost of living and the supply/demand ratio of nurses in a particular region, not the cost of a nursing education. If hospitals could get an adequate supply of licensed nurses willing to work for $8/hour, they'd be offering nurses $8/hour.
    besaangel, Jessy_RN, TriciaJ, and 14 others like this.
  10. 7
    I totally agree with you, OP and also not talking about comparisons.

    Throughout the many decades of the BSN entry campaign, hospitals seemed content to watch us wage war on ourselves and only sent lobbyists to block legislation in the few states designated by the ANA as top priority.

    The end of the nursing shortage now means that administrators can "prefer BSNs" because they are getting something at no cost to themselves most of the time.

    I believe they should be challenged to take a stand on the issue. Maybe a nurse should make a "Roger and me" style documentary where he or she follows the hospital CEO around with a camera to ask the hard questions they love to avoid. :-D
    Jessy_RN, Cammy17, Esme12, and 4 others like this.
  11. 6
    Quote from elkpark
    Actually, it's based on neither -- it's based on what the market will bear. There was a thread here quite a while back about Mass General (I think) offering a new grad ICU training program at a ridiculously low hourly wage (in return for some great education, contacts, and the possibility of a permanent job at MGH when you completed the program). The program had scads of applicants. There is great variety in nursing wages around the country, reflecting the cost of living and the supply/demand ratio of nurses in a particular region, not the cost of a nursing education. If hospitals could get an adequate supply of licensed nurses willing to work for $8/hour, they'd be offering nurses $8/hour.
    *** SO, SO, SO true! Good point.
    Hard to blame the like of Mass General though. Nurses have allowed our education to become so watered down that our new grads are helpless and their first employer must invest vast sums of money and time in them before they are at all useful to the hospital.
    besaangel, TriciaJ, NurseGuyBri, and 3 others like this.
  12. 17
    Quote from PMFB-RN
    *** SO, SO, SO true! Good point.
    Hard to blame the like of Mass General though. Nurses have allowed our education to become so watered down that our new grads are helpless and their first employer must invest vast sums of money and time in them before they are at all useful to the hospital.
    I say do away with teaching to the test (NCLEX) and teach them to be nurses. Graduates should pass or fail the NCLEX on what they've learned and retained, not because they were taught how to take it.
    besaangel, pinkiepieRN, Jessy_RN, and 14 others like this.


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