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A Capstone Research Paper submitted to the faculty of Wesley College

in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Abstract

            This paper seeks to showcase the way trainings and continued education has shaped the way nurses address the continuing developments and changes. It is through these trainings and further education that several factors are affected. In the end, there is a need to revitalize the processes and mechanisms even more so that it can not only continuously address the challenges in the field, but also attract people into the nursing profession because of the relative gains it gives to individuals.

Introduction

            The nursing profession in itself is dynamic in nature. It seeks to address every concern of patients who suffer from different ailments.  Due to this scenario, many nursing professionals seek different training methods and mechanisms to pave the way for continued development. This study seeks to see the different practices incorporated by schools and institutions for nurses to be competent with the evolving and changing environment in the sector and its relevant outcomes. It is through these mechanisms that make nurses incorporate the changes happening in the sector and profession.

Statement of the Problem

            The research problem will revolve on how do institutions and organizations address the challenges posed by the constantly changing nursing sector. Addressing this, it can be argued that by properly creating training and curriculum for continued education, nurses can be dynamic and responsive to the changes brought about by development.

Review of Literature

            The review of literature looks into the different training programs made by institutions and organizations to address the evolving needs of nurses. The time frame of the literature review is from 2000 – 2008. It seeks to show different objectives and programs made by schools and organizations to address the changes and developments happening in the nursing sector. In addition to that, after each study, there will be an explanation as to why it is important in the overall study.

American Nurses Association (2001)

            This study looks into the way of addressing the shortage of nurses. One way which that was mentioned is the importance of educating people about the importance of the profession in society. “Nurse Executives can be helpful by starting an organizational campaign to educate their staff about how to communicate in social and community settings.” (ANA, 2001, p.3) Looking at this study, it can be argued that such study showcases the need to enhance and develop nurses due to their relative shortage in numbers. By properly looking into this challenge, the nursing profession can attract more people in entering the field.

Virtual Space for the Nursing Continued Education (2004)

            This study showcases a method and initiative to enhance continued education in the nursing sector. The proponents seek to create a database that will enable Cuban nurses to continually be informed about new changes within the profession. “Starting by the preliminary review of international nursing web site and the study of the benefits of the web tools for the continued nursing education, we show the first version of TelePAE like a virtual space that defines services of education, resources, virtual clinic and information service.” (Garcia and Salomon, 2004, p.1) This study is related to the research because it creates an alternative approach in establishing training and development among nursing professionals.

National Review of Nursing Education

            This study focuses on different actions to address the challenges present in the nursing practice. It seeks to elaborate on the problems and at the same time propose solutions in the realm of nursing education. “Various recommendations are suggested: increase in number of nurse educators and clinical support nurses, increase in hospital based clinical skills programs, undergraduate nursing program to be extended to four years, availability of part time postgraduate Critical Care courses, and a collaborative approach between Universities and hospitals in nursing curriculum development.” (Driscoll, p.1) This in turn, again is important in the study for it seeks to create the road for continued education among nurses. These changes are important in establishing foundation for nurses.

Analysis

            Realizing the outcomes brought about by different changes in the medical profession, trainings and continuous education is necessary for the overall development and sustenance of the nursing profession. One can attest the importance of continuous training and curriculum development is necessary to suit the challenges posed by the nursing profession. It is through this that the paper will address such question in different ways. These include (1) economic, (2) application, (3) societal, and (4) political. They are important because each one is affected by it.

Economic: More Education, more money

            There is a need to pursue training and development for it affects the economic standing of nurses in society. With continue education and training, nurses are capable of acquiring and getting higher paying jobs contrary to those who had not attended such programs. “It is important that nurses pursue higher education in order to be eligible for promotions to supervisory and higher paying roles.” (Salary.com, 2000) Refer to table 1.1 to show the relative increase of salaries by nurses who continue to attend training and further education. Also, to showcase the demand for nurses until 2010, refer to table 2 such will try to give out the figures that are primarily due to the relatively changing age group. “It is projected to grow faster than the average occupation through the year 2010.” (Salary.com. 2000)

            With this, it can be seen that there is a positive relationship between continued education and further studies in the realm of nursing. Individuals and society must realize the growing demand for such profession. “There are several reasons for this growth, but the main causes are the aging population of registered nurses and recent declines in nursing school enrollment.” (Salary.com, 2000) As for nurses, achieving more education can give them the edge over others. “Nurses can also advance to higher managerial roles, taking on more responsibility as head nurses, director, and even vice presidents.” (Salary.com, 2000)

Societal: more than schools and training facilities

            Another important motivator for training and development are schools and institutions. More than this, the paper sees the importance of society in promoting continued education and for individual nurses to take the challenge to improve. The example that the paper will use is the Indiana State Nurses Association (ISNA).

            Seeing this, ISNA believes in the capabilities of individuals in their desire to pursue further education for nurse’s development. “Continuing nursing education should assist individual practitioners in the continued acquisition of knowledge, the extension of professional responsibilities, the expansion of interpersonal skills, and the improvement of problem solving approaches to professional practice” (ISNA, 2005)

            ISNA, as an institution also serves to help people in achieving continued nursing education by creating criteria’s that is fit for advanced nurses. “The purpose of the approver unit is to provide for a system of peer review of continuing education events by applying the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation approved criteria for continuing education activities and providers and to provide for maintenance of records regarding the system of peer review.” (ISNA, 2005)

            Analyzing this, society and institutions really play an important part in promoting continued education and training among nurses. They set the very foundation and framework of how such can be possible among nursing professionals who desire to improve their knowledge and expertise in the field.

Application

            The application process looks into the overall dynamics that happens in continued education among individuals. The paper will use the models that the Arkansas Nursing has been practicing. This is one way of showing how nurses are treated and checked for their development. “Educational programs that recognize this common core better serve the individual nurse, as well as the public and the nursing profession.” (NANEP, 2005)

            Looking into the paper even more, there are three tables that show to illustrate the dynamics of continued education practiced under the Arkansas model. Table 3 showcases the credit parameters for the LPN or LPTN. It can be seen that there is a varied results with regards to the number of hours according to the chosen degree by an individual.

            Table 4 on the other hand shows of an articulating RN who graduated from an associate degree or diploma program. Again, we see here differences in the number of hours rendered by an individual compared to the other facet given. On the other hand, table 5  highlights how the articulation is tested and the work experience requirements necessary for the completion of the program. Again, it shows differences and gives importance to people who applied less than 12 months. There is the tendency to adopt and use the experience requirement as a category for taking the examinations.

            Looking at this scenario, it can be seen that different mechanisms and articulations are used by schools and places to determine and develop continued education in the nursing profession. It seeks to show that if an institution is effective in its objectives, nurses can be assured that they can receive the optimum amount of information they need to succeed. “Efficient and effective educational mobility of individuals is promoted by articulation arrangements among institutions.” (NANEP, 2005)

Political

            In the light of the political aspect, we can see here that continued education among nurses has spurred the creation of legislation and laws to provide and support such endeavor. By actively creating laws, benefits of nurses are protected and at the same time incentives are given to actively attract professionals in taking the initiative. The study of Kalist and Spurr, seek to showcase the relationship of these laws and the advanced nursing practice.

            In the study, both Kalist and Spurr pointed out several facets that are striking among the medical profession. “These healthcare providers are of special interest because there is a considerable overlap between their responsibilities and those of physicians in corresponding areas of medical practice.” (Kalist & Spurr, 2004, p.271) Both authors sought to showcase the relationship of created state laws and the medical profession particularly nursing. “We find that enrollments are approximately 13 percent higher in states where APN’s have more professional independence.” (Kalist & Spurr, 2004, p.279)

            In addition, the study showcases the way there had been increases in enrollments due to the enactment of laws. “It appears that legislation creating a more favorable practice environment has achieved part of its desired goal: an increase in the number of primary care providers, such as nurse practitioners.” (Kalist & Spurr, 2004, p.279)

            Seeing this, there are indeed good implications if proper legislation and laws are enacted together with continued education and training for the nursing practice. It is through this, that there is a need for nurses to continuously address the needed changes not only for their betterment but also for the future of the medical profession.

Recommendations and Conclusion

            Realizing the importance of continued education and training among nursing professionals, there is a need for development in curriculum and teaching among mentors in schools and institutions. This means constantly updating the information and changes happening within the field of nursing. In addition, nurses must continue to be dynamic. This means that every now and then training is necessary and important. In the end, given the proper mechanisms and constantly monitoring for updates and developments can not only benefit the individual nurse in general but also the overall nursing profession.

            To conclude, the study showcased the importance of continued education and training among nurses. In addition it showcased its relative benefits and effects in other facets that are also important for an individual. Due to this, by constantly making possible such scenario, patients can be assured that nurses are fit to do their responsibilities and role in society.

Index

Table 1.1

Salaries of VariousNursing Positions

Level
Years of Experience
Median Salary
Nursing Assistant
0-2
$20, 700
Registered Nurse
2-4
$45, 577
Obstetrics Nurse
2-4
$47, 483
Occupational Nurse
2-4
$55,289
Clinical Nurse Specialists
2-4
$61,892
Nurse Practitioner
2-4
$66,154
Nurse Manager/Supervisor
At least 7
$70, 043
(SALARY.COM, 2000)

Table 1.2

Projected Number of and Demand for Licensed Registered Nurses, 2000-2020

Licensed RNS
Licensed RNS Active in Nursing
FTE Licensed RN Workers
Projected demand for FTE Licensed RNs
2000
2,697,000
2,249,000
1,891,000
2,001,500
2020
2,705,000
2,163,000
1,808,000
2, 824,900
(HRSA, 2007)

Table 3

Nursing Credit Parameters for the Articulating LPN or LPTN

The LPN or LPTN articulating to
Associate Degree in Nursing
Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing
Diploma in Nursing
Will be awarded at least the following number of semester credit hours
6 semester hours in nursing
5 semester in nursing
25 semester hours in nursing
Will be required to

complete no more than the following number of semester credit hours

40 semester hours in nursing
59 semester hours in nursing
60 semester hours in nursing
(NANEP, 2005)

Table 4

Nursing Credit Parameters for the Articulating RN who graduated from an associate degree or diploma program that was NLNAC accredited at the time of graduation

RN Articulating to:
Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing
Will be awarded at least the following number of semester credit hours
33 semester hours in nursing
Will be required to complete no more than the following number of semester credit hours
38 semester hours in nursing
(NANEP, 2005)

Table 5

Articulation Testing and Work Experience Requirements

<12 months after graduation
>12 months after graduation
No testing for articulation required – some

programs may require math competency exam for

articulation
No testing for articulation required if during past 12 to 24 months have had at least 1000 hours of

nursing employment. Individual schools may have special requirements for work experience settings

No work experience required – except it may be

required for accelerated tracks within programs
The individual school may require testing if work

experience requirement not met

(NANEP, 2005)

References

American Nurses Association. (2001) The Nursing Shortage: Solutions for the short and

long term. Retrieved March 21, 2008 from http://nursingworld.org/mods/archive/mod270/cesh03.htm

Driscoll, A. (n.d.) National Review of Nursing Education. Retrieved March 21, 2008

from http://209.85.173.104/search?q=cache:frGUf9pnZo0J:www.dest.gov.au/archive/highered/nursing/sub/69.rtf+studies+in+continued+education+in+nursing&hl=tl&ct=clnk&cd=18&gl=ph

Garcia, Y.C. and Salomon, N.C.H. (2004) Virtual Space for the Nursing Continued

Education, TelePAE. Retrieved March 21, 2008 from http://209.85.173.104/search?q=cache:evgvqhx16HUJ:cmbi.bjmu.edu.cn/news/report/2004/medinfo2004/pdffiles/papers/063_d040005456.pdf+studies+in+continued+education+in+nursing&hl=tl&ct=clnk&cd=6&gl=ph

Human Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) (2007) Projected Number of and

Demand for Licensed Registered Nurses, 2000-2020. Retrieved March 21, 2008 from http://bhpr.hrsa.gov/nursing/

Indiana State Nurses Association (ISNA) (2005) Continuing Education Policy.  Retrieved

March 21, 2008 from http://www.indiananurses.org/education/philosophy.htm

Kalist, D.E. and Spurr, S.J. (2004) The Effect of State Laws on the Supply of Advanced

Practice Nurses in International Journal of Health Care Finance and Econonomics. 4 no. 4 Retrieved March 21, 2008. pp. 271 – 281

NANEP (2005) The Arkansas Nursing Articulation Model. Retrieved March 21, 2008

from http://209.85.173.104/search?q=cache:KdBXQJOho7UJ:www.arsbn.org/pdfs/nursing-programs/approved_model_2005.pdf+tables+for+nursing+continued+education&hl=tl&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=ph

Salary.com (2000) Nursing Career Education and Advancement. Retrieved March 21,

2008 from http://www.salary.com/personal/layoutscripts/psnl_articles.asp?tab=psn&cat=cat011&ser=ser036&part=par432

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