Professional Development of Nursing Professionals

Subject: Nursing
Pages: 4
Words: 851
Reading time:
4 min
Study level: Bachelor


The Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) report contains four key messages that outline how nursing education and professional practice should be developed to achieve the healthcare goals of the nation. It is essential for nursing to practice because IOM’s report outlines the changes in nursing practice and how they can be achieved in four main domains, which are the key messages of this report. This paper will examine IOM’s key messages, the influence of the report on nursing education, the role of professional development, the changes to education that meet the needs of an aging and diverse population, and nurses’ role in the evolving healthcare system.

Four Key Messages

The main barrier for nurses is the policies and regulations from insurers that did not allow these professionals to use their knowledge to help patients and include APRNs in the list of medical professionals that patients can choose as their medical providers. IOM’s first message states that nurses should be given the opportunity to practice “to the full extent of their education and training” (IOM, 2011, p. 40). This is an important message because nurses possess the knowledge and skill to provide quality healthcare services but, in many cases, cannot practice to the full extend.

The second message relates to nursing education and the changes within this system that should enable a smooth academic progression. This message connects the suggested changes in the scope of nursing practice and the education system that will allow the discussed transformation. The significance of this factor is reflected in the role of education in preparing nurses who are qualified to provide quality care and ensure the safety of patients.

Thirdly, IOM highlights the need to view nurses as partners to other healthcare professionals. As full partners, nurses will be able to have a voice in the healthcare system, where their opinion is valued, which is significant because it allows nurses to be leaders. The final message relates to the information infrastructure that would allow collecting data effectively and using it for further planning and policy development. To reform the healthcare system, policymakers, and leaders must-have information. This element of change is significant because nurses cooperate with other healthcare professionals and work in different environments, and to advance their role in the healthcare system, it is essential to understand it fully, which is why information infrastructure is necessary.

IOM’s View of Nursing

The direct influence of IOM on nursing leadership and education is that the report connects the healthcare system reform, mainly the Affordable Care Act, the issues within the system, and the role of nurses. An important factor is that nurses should “assume leadership roles in redesigning care in the United States” (IOM, 2011, p. 10). Moreover, the report outlines a plan to increase the number of nurses who obtain a BSN degree and double the number of individuals pursuing a doctorate, which will have a direct impact on nursing education because colleges will introduce Bachelors’s and Doctorate programs for nurses. The benefits and opportunities for a BSN nurse include an ability to further advance one’s medical knowledge through the Bachelor’s and Doctorate programs, and these programs will be changed to fulfill the requirements of 21century nursing.

It is essential for a nurses’ role and education to evolve because the healthcare system is flawed, and issues such as lack of cooperation between different providers, costs, and shortage of resources do not allow providing quality services to all. The current trends showcase that the population is aging, which means that challenges that healthcare professionals face daily change as well, and more attention will be dedicated to issues such as managing multiple chronic conditions (Guerra et al., 2019). Without the change in nurses’ roles and education, these changes will not be appropriately addressed. Patients will be unable to receive the medical help they need since there will be a shortage of qualified professionals.

Professional development and lifelong learning are core elements of successful practice. The relevance of them in terms of caring for diverse populations and across the lifespan and whiting the health-illness continuum is the duty that nurses have before their patients to provide high-quality care (Chettouh, 2016). This allows nurses to adopt best practices and use newly discovered evidence in their work, and in this way, they can stay up to date and provide the best evidence-based care to diverse populations. Nurses can assist in effectively managing patient care within an evolving healthcare system by becoming primary care providers. In this way, nurses will be able to address the multitude of problems within the healthcare system, which were previously discussed, and use their competencies and knowledge to provide quality care.


Overall, this paper examined the report by IOM and the key messages presented in it. Due to the changes within the healthcare system, the nursing profession and the scope of practice must change. IOM’s report helps policymakers understand the role of nurses and create more training programs for a seamless educational transition. Hence, the education system will evolve to suit the needs of the diverse and aging populations and provide opportunities for continuous professional development.


Chettouh, F.(2016). Continuing professional development: A key requirement for revalidation.

Guerra, C. S., Berbiche, D., & Vasiliadis, H. (2019). Measuring multimorbidity in older adults: Comparing different data sources. BMC Geriatrics, 19(1). Web.

Institute of Medicine. (2011). The future of nursing: Leading change, advancing health. National Academies Press (US).