BSN in 10: Why RN-BSN Credentials Are Linked to Better Patient Outcomes

BSN in 10 Why RN-BSN Credentials Are Linked to Better Patient Outcomes
BSN in 10 Why RN-BSN Credentials Are Linked to Better Patient Outcomes

Since the BSN was proposed as a requirement for nursing practice by the House of Delegates of the American Nurses Association in 1964, the BSN in 10 report recommendation has been a hotly debated issue. Recently, New York set a precedent for other states by passing a law requiring New York nurses to earn a BSN within 10 years of becoming licensed.

Better Patient Outcomes and Reduced Patient Mortality Linked to BSN-Prepared Nurses

The difference between an RN and BSN is a central point in the ongoing debate about nursing practice, as better patient outcomes, reduced patient mortality and morbidity rates, and greater nurse satisfaction have all been linked to advanced nursing education. In a study published in the Journal of Professional Nursing charting the course for nurses’ achievement of higher education levels, motivators influencing RNs to pursue a Bachelor of Science in Nursing or higher included:

Career Outcomes for Registered Nurses Image

BSN degree programs such as Carson-Newman’s RNBSN online program provide the leadership and critical thinking skills needed to effectively serve patients. A BSN also provides RNs with enhanced communication skills – critical for communication with doctors, patients and other nursing staff - as well as a widened view of professional nursing, essential for today’s high-tech and increasingly complex health care system.


Get Your Free Program Guide


Other States Adopt the BSN in 10

In New York, the BSN in 10 legislation took 14 years to be passed after significant lobbying by the nursing profession nationwide. In the larger context, other states have been wrestling with the BSN in 10 issue ever since the Institute of Medicine’s 2010 report recommended that 80 percent of RNs earn a baccalaureate degree by the year 2020. North Dakota’s 1987 law requiring nurses have a BSN was repealed in 2003 due to its effect on the nursing shortage there, and the Illinois Nurses Association considered grassroots and legislative approaches in discussions regarding implementation of advanced education for registered nurses. New Jersey has also considered legislating the BSN in 10 initiative. stated in 2017 that many other states have plans to enact similar legislation to New York’s.

Increased Educational Expectations of Nurses Emphasize Critical Skills

Greater focus on academic excellence in nursing underscores the important role nurses play on health care teams. Nurses are in direct contact with patients the most and comprise the largest number of workers in the health care field. Yet in terms of formal education, the RN is often the least educated discipline on a collaborative team of doctors, pharmacists, occupational therapists, social workers, and speech-language therapists. The new legislation in New York responded to the need for advanced education in RNs to provide better health care in a highly technological, complex system and be equipped to look after higher complexity patients.

RN to BSN Programs Open New Doors for Nurses

An online Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing program can be completed while you carry out the responsibilities of your current nursing position, and you’ll become qualified for alternative nursing careers and attain the career advancement you’re looking for through a BSN. Providing the skills to employ evidence-based practice and patient outcome measures, these and other courses at Carson-Newman’s program incorporate clinical practice and coursework to develop leadership competencies:

  • Statistics for the Health Care Professional

  • Health Assessment for the Registered Nurse

  • Nursing Research and Evidenced-Based Practice

  • Altered Health States

  • Dimensions of Professional Nursing for the Registered Nurse

  • Leadership and Management for the Registered Nurse

  • Pharmacology for the Registered Nurse

  • Community/Public Health Nursing

Many RNs are not aware of requiring additional skills and may not realize the value of a BSN until they step outside the hospital during their clinical practicum experience. Along with identifying key issues and treatment options and conducting necessary interventions, Carson-Newman’s RN to BSN program prepares graduates to identify key issues and treatment options. For a full list of courses in the online RN to BSN program, download the brochure.


Get Your Free Program Guide


Read Top Advantages of an Online RN to BSN Degree.


New Jersey State Nurses Association “BSN in 10” Fact Sheet - from