Nurses are the largest group of health care providers in the nation. As the health care landscape changes, so too does the role of the nurse. Today’s nurses are filling in the gaps left by the shortage of physicians. They’re dealing with tight budgets, an aging patient population and more complicated illnesses.
Nurses these days are even moving to the forefront of health care delivery and medicine by publishing their own original research, influencing health care policy and developing medical apps. Today’s nurses are more skilled, qualified and educated than ever before. The proliferation of new health care technology and online degree programs are tools many nurses are using to keep up with the rapidly changing health care system and advance to the top of their field.More than ever, an advanced education is necessary for nurses hoping to succeed in their field.
Nurses Must Adapt to a Changing Health Care Landscape
The health care landscape is changing. Today’s nurses must cope with ever more complex cases as aging patients present with multiple chronic conditions. Health care providers are facing ever-increasing rates of difficult-to-treat chronic illnesses like obesity and diabetes. Health care reform will lead to unprecedented numbers of insured patients seeking care.
Education is one tool nurses are using to adapt. In the past, nurses needed only an associate degree to practice their profession. Today, laws and policies require more and more nurses to have at least a Bachelor of Nursing. Many Masters in Nursing programs allow registered nurses to go to school online to earn the qualifications they need to become nurse practitioners and even specialize in a particular area of medicine, like obesity, pharmacology or anesthesiology. (more…)