Nursing has a distinct history that presented a foundation for its evolution. The discipline first emerged in the mid-19th century, as Florence Nightingale founded the earliest official nursing school in England (Wang et al., 2021). Her impact facilitated a nursing transition from homecare to hospitals as nursing became more formalized in the late 19th century, and education was introduced to cope with evolving patient needs (Graebe & Chappell, 2019). Categorically, nursing was based on gaining information and caretaking. The contemporary training model has increased nursing responsibilities, including the provision of patient care, patient advocacy, and healthcare research.
Progressively, nursing has revolutionized its application to support healthcare advancements. According to Ackley et al. (2021), nurses have extended their skills to primary nursing diagnoses of illnesses establishing distinguished roles separate from the previous apprenticeship practice. Thus, nursing scope changed from caregiving to individualized care and treatment in more personalized and specialized approaches. Contemporary approaches have allowed nurses to provide care through theoretical and clinical experience application to carry out independent patient care, extending to families and communities (Wang et al., 2021). Therefore, nursing has evolved from a medicine subservient to a profession with distinct independence of roles and activity in a given setting. It allows nurses to carry out assessments and diagnoses of individual patients and exercise care as they deem fit.
Competency Differences Between an Associate Nursing Degree and a Baccalaureate Education in Nursing
Associate Nursing Degree (ADN) and baccalaureate nursing education (BSN) are distinguishable based on the skills gained. ASN focuses on imparting technical skills to the nurses, whereas the BSN emphasizes leadership, management, research, and the technical skills required (Herzing University, 2021). Notably, both degrees provide nurses with the acceptable technical standards necessary to practice, but baccalaureate nursing education focuses more on public health, patient relations, and disease prevention to improve healthcare (Herzing University, 2021). Nurses under BSN better understand patient issues, whereas the ADN nurses are more centered on caregiving and technical support.
Changes in Scope of Practice Between an ADN and a BSN Nurse
Improved knowledge and comprehension of specialties and skills, along with increased autonomy in decision-making, are some benefits of nurses with bachelor’s degrees. Associate degree nurses concentrate on routine patient care and clinical responsibilities such as chart updating, basic procedure administration, and patient monitoring (American Association of Colleges of Nursing, 2021). Baccalaureate nurses can take on leadership, administrative, and management positions in addition to providing direct patient care, shifting more of their attention to long-term projects inside a healthcare facility. Thus, the scope of practice is substantially influenced by the type of education a nurse gains and specializes in particular functions.
Differences in Nursing Care Between ADN and BSN
A bachelor’s degree in nursing enhances analytical and critical thinking abilities and provides training for operations that associate degree nurses are ill-equipped to handle. Due to their educational background, baccalaureate nurses are more equipped, prepared, eager, and effective (Herzing University, 2021). Considerably, for a patient, in for an emergency checkup from a collapse, an ASN may be more accentuated to care practice such as medication administration such as IVs, whereas a BSN-prepared nurse would be invested in the analytical assessment of the issue and offer an evidence-based diagnosis. Therefore, contextualizing the situation, a BSN will be more critical in their decision-making, adopting the skills taught in EBP to treat the condition, whereas the ADN will prioritize the patient and family’s physical and emotional condition, indicating variations in potential roles in professional practice.
Significance of Applying Evidence-Based Practice to Nursing Care
Evidence-based practice (EBP) was introduced as a mechanism that combined research evidence and clinical expertise to provide more accurate healthcare. According to Horntvedt et al. (2018), nurses’ application of the EBP is integrated into teaching through interactive strategies, where contemporary practice includes gaming and simulations as mechanisms for interactive learning. Subsequently, BSN-trained nurses gain applicable skills in clinical care, implementing research and knowledge-based assessments of patients’ conditions. The significance was perceived to generate more positive patient outcomes under BSN-prepared nurses (Horntvedt et al., 2018). Thus, interactive training ensures an efficient application of the EBP mechanisms in actual professional situations.
Nurse Communication and Collaboration with Interdisciplinary Teams and Effect on Patient Outcomes
Patients require to be in the care of more than one medical professional. Therefore, the patient must be under the care of a multidisciplinary team of experts. These teams include nurses, physicians, and other healthcare professionals (Eastern Illinois University, 2022). Collaboration can only occur when these people work efficiently with each other and the patients’ families to ensure proper medical care. Such collaborations happen when all team members communicate efficiently, especially the nurses, who are seen as conduits between the doctor and the patient (Eastern Illinois University, 2022). Patients experience a lot of stress, and such collaborative efforts reduce the level of stress the patient experiences leading to a positive outcome. Elsewhere, Zhou et al. (2021) dictate a similar interaction between nurses and engineers that support the integration of technology and devices, which improve healthcare outcomes.
Conclusively, nursing education is an intricate sector with distinct classifications, each with a particular role in healthcare. The differences create diverse functions and allow multifaceted approaches to patient care. Moreover, healthcare work is distributed and done by more than one person, reducing the likelihood of medical and nursing errors. Poor communication or collaboration between all parties concerned poses a risk to patients’ safety. Therefore, communication is vital to establishing a holistic approach to healthcare incorporating multidisciplinary collaborations.
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Graebe, J., & Chappell, K. (2019). Looking back and leaping forward—A reflection on the evolution of nursing continuing professional development credentialing. The Journal of Continuing Education in Nursing, 50(12), 531–533.
Herzing University. (2020). Associate vs. Bachelor’s in Nursing: What you need to know. Web.
Horntvedt, M. E. T., Nordsteien, A., Fermann, T., & Severinsson, E. (2018). Strategies for teaching evidence-based practice in nursing education: a thematic literature review. BMC Medical Education, 18(1).
Wang, Q., Zhu, R., & Duan, Z. (2021). An analysis of past Florence Nightingale medal recipients: insights into exceptional nurses and the evolution of nursing. SAGE Open Nursing, 7, 237796082098839.
Zhou, Y., Li, Z., & Li, Y. (2021, May). Interdisciplinary collaboration between nursing and engineering in health care: A scoping review. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 117, 103900. Web.