IOM Report Offers Glimpse of Nursing's Future

Rebecca Hendren, for HealthLeaders Media , October 12, 2010

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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2 comments on "IOM Report Offers Glimpse of Nursing's Future"

Graham M. Suggs (11/4/2010 at 12:06 PM)
While in nursing school in Texas in 1975 the idea proposed was for a BSN to be the entry level for all nurses. Nothing has been accomplished and now we have a report that states 80% of nurses will have BSN's by 2020. I have worked at the bedside for my entire career and actually seen the collaboration between the physician and nursing deteriorate in that the model of evidenced based practice places us in boxes that we are to follow and stifles creative problem solving for health care. Not all patients fit into the same box all the time and to care for the ongoing health care of a patient requires each and everyone of us to think outside of the box.

Jeanenne Watters RN MSN CPHQ (10/14/2010 at 12:01 PM)
Two thoughts: 1) I'd challenge any RN with an ADN to do an RN to MSN program. Takes about the same amount of time as earning a BSN. 2) We need to resolve the shortage of nurse educators before we can demand any RN to obtain further education.




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