Nursing Schools Learning More on NY’s “BSN in 10” Proposal

Last year we reported on a New York law that would require graduates of state nursing schools to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing within 10 years of licensing.

Nursing schools are now learning more about this proposal and why it might be important to area health facilities in the coming years.

Currently, nurses graduating college with a 2-year degree and obtaining licensure are having a hard time staying put in their jobs. A compounding problem seems to be surfacing in the state, one that is likely to bubble to the surface across the nation as the next few years pass.

The average age of nurses is higher than ever and they expect nurses around age 50 to take up nearly one-quarter of the field within the next few years. Soon after, these nurses will begin to retire. Logically, new nurses graduating school will come up behind them to fill in the newly opened positions. Reports are showing this won’t be the case with 2-year nurses, however.

For many reasons, graduates of a two-year nursing degree program seem to have a harder time translating what they learned in school to a practical application in the work place. Because of the discomfort, new nurses are leaving hospitals and medical facilities for other specialized jobs in the industry. However, experts agree that the problem is a matter of what students learn while at nursing school.

Students who graduate from a 4-year nursing program have an extra couple of years to learn about some very important aspects of nursing – namely how their role in the health system fits in with allied health disciplines. In short, New York wants to make sure that nurses who graduate with an Associate’s degree and get licensed follow through and complete another 2-years within a decade. The hope is that this will lead to a more stable work force where qualified nurses retain jobs and facilities maintain staffing.