As an LPN working in a suburban ED, I perform complex tasks like IV therapy, blood transfusion, IVP medication administration and of course I utilize my own critical thinking skills. All of this is granted under my state's board of nursing practice act and of course with the hospital's permission. I feel well prepared to cross over into my local community college's LPN to ASN RN program (just waiting on the acceptance letter due in October). I have several concerns that I wish to pose to the general RN community.
With no further shortage of nurses, many hospitals are stepping up the entry point for the RN to be a BSN. I read on these forums quite often how much discontent this idea sews within the community. I wish to ask many of you RNs to honestly reply to this thread with your feelings and experience.
1. Do you find the care an ADN provides to be substandard to a BSN, please explain?
2. What specific skills are learned in a BSN program that wouldn't be learned to a greater extent on the job?
3. Do you prefer to work with an all BSN staff and why?
4. Is the BSN more equipped to deal with the technology found in a hospital setting and if so, please explain?
5. Is it fair to pay a BSN more money than an ASN? Is it fair to pay a BSN more money than an ASN who already posesses a Bachelor's in a non-nursing field?
6. What effects are the ADN/ASN RNs feeling from their current hospital administration to obtain a BSN?
7. Do many ADN/ASN RNs feel their jobs will eventually only reside in LTC and other ECFs, effectively replacing the LPN.
8. Many ASN/ADN RNs still hold a Bachelor's degree in a non-nursing field, should they still pursue a BSN?
9. Is an ASN/ADN more suited to deal with lower ESI acuity level patients, such as level III or lower while a BSN deals more with level II and I.
10. What are community colleges and ADN/ASN RN's actively doing to ensure the 2 year RN remains part of this nation's healthcare system (besides passively complaining online?).
I pose these questions for fear that not long after I graduate, despite my amazing LPN ER experience and my soon to be even greater RN ER experience, I will be ill-equipped for this ever expanding world of nursing. I believe an LPN and RN should strive for continued education, but do not feel it needs to be expressed by an overly expensive 4 year degree. I feel community colleges adequately prepares a person for the RN experience. I feel even more so that an LPN who becomes an RN is to be more prepared for the RN experience than a new grade BSN or ASN.
I asked my manager why this attitude of BSN>ASN exists during a performance appraisal (which I got a 4% raise - the max possible raise yay). She said the BSN is more prepared because when she was going through her BSN program she was practically required to spend a minimum of eight hours creating care plans, creating drug cards, and using NANDA approved nursing Dx's. She said that thanks to her BSN training she felt a BSN nurse was more capable of predicting patient outcomes and understanding pathophysiology and etiology.
I refrained from saying anything that LPN school, although it was merely 12 months long, detailed everything she just said.
I just want the RNs to stand up for their education level. I want them to fight against this new establishment of BSN only.
I'm just sick of always being on the lower end of the totem pole. Half of the LPNs I work with possess a higher degree than their RN counterparts but have only the LPN license in the field of nursing. Still we are treated as substandard nurses by many RNs.
One friend has an MSN and says she's equally frustrated for now she is contantly egged on to obtain her DNP.
One thing is for sure. A nurse is not a nurse. Its all about classification and I fear one day in the foreseeable future the ASN RN will go the way of the LPN, more scarce and less desireable in the acute care setting.