IOM Report Offers Glimpse of Nursing's Future
The report's 500-plus pages can be boiled down to four key messages, which are:
- Nurses should practice to the full extent of their education and training
- Nurses should achieve higher levels of education and training through an improved education system that promotes seamless academic progression
- Nurses should be full partners, with physicians and other healthcare professionals, in redesigning healthcare in the United States
- Effective workforce planning and policy making require better data collection and information infrastructure
Some of these findings are nothing new and have been recommended by thought leaders for decades, such as increasing the number of RNs with baccalaureate degrees. This report gives new credence to the call and suggests a timeline: It calls for 80% of RNs to have BSNs by 2020 and for the number of nurses with doctorate degrees to have doubled in the same timeframe.
The report says that to handle the increasing complexity of care and greater responsibilities they must assume in the future healthcare world, nurses will need higher levels of education and training, starting with the baccalaureate.
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