you go girl. Nursing has brought this upon ourselves by not establishing an entry level into nursing. This is why everyone thinks a nurse is a nurse is a nurse. An MA is NOT a nurse, they are supportive staff for nursing. No other profession allows so many educational levels. Nursing is no longer a physican hand maiden just doing the tasks they are told to do. We are held accountable to much more, including questioning our practice. The critical thinking involved in nursing today is monumental. Tasky skills such as taking VS, giving baths (which I still love to do), even passing meds are no longer the primary focus of nursing (as important as they are). We have to interpret those VS and act on that intepretation, assess the patient getting the bath even to the extent of 'is the bath the priority right now', and determine any effect of those meds and their interaction with other meds, to name just the tip of the ice berg of what we are held accountable for.
No, "Virginia", an MA is NOT the same thing as an RN. I wouldn't be suprised though if they are making close to what an RN makes because we are extremely underpaid for our knowledge, responsiblity, and education.