Recent changes in the nursing profession are leading more nurses to become registered nurses. Chief among these reasons are the increasingly complicated practices involved in providing adequate care to patients. For example, whereas the role of nurses used to be relegated to taking patients’ vital signs, bathing patients, and generally assisting doctors, today’s nurse has far more responsibility than ever before.
In modern hospitals, even nurses who are not involved in advanced practice, may find themselves attending to life threatening situations that may require immediate action in order to save a patient’s life. Also, the trend of more nurses taking on the role of nurse practitioner is increasing the prestige of the nursing profession.
According to the national director of nursing at Brown Mackie College, Brenda McAllister, today’s nurses must be equipped to help patients in a wide variety of situations. Unlike nurses of the past whose role was often restricted, now nurses must be prepared to work in difficult situations that may require increasingly creative solutions.
This is as a result of a trend which has seen healthcare institutions develop a more team oriented atmosphere, providing additional opportunities for nurses and additional responsibilities as well. In order to be adequately prepared for the challenges of the job many of those entering into the nursing profession are pursuing specialized university degrees and advanced training.
Despite the fact that the nursing profession offers such a wide variety of opportunities – like working in a hospital or medical facility, working in a nursing home, or even becoming a care manager or care coordinator – on a whole the country is experiencing a shortage of nurses. But, the need for nurses continues to grow. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nursing is one of the fastest growing occupations in the country, and is expected to grow at a rate that is 19% higher than average over the next eight years.