New York Enacts Mandatory BSN Law

New York recently enacted mandatory BSN legislation requiring all RNs to obtain their BSN within 10 years of initial licensure. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the act into law which took effect December 19, 2017. The American Nurses Association (ANA) House of Delegates has long championed the idea that all nurses obtain a BSN or higher degree by 2020. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) Future of Nursing Report has called for 80% of RNs to obtain BSN education by 2020.

New Jersey has pending legislation and several other states have legislation in varying stages of the process to enact laws for RNs to obtain minimally BSN education. Small states such as North Dakota have tried to make the BSN mandatory, but by 2003 they had to rescind the legislation in order to find enough nurses to meet the public need due to critical shortages of RNs.

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Why Do You Want to Be a Nurse?

Why are you exploring the nursing profession? The most frequent answer to that question is “to help people,” which I’m quite sure also tells much of the story about why you became a paramedic. There’s always more to it than that, but the basic reason revolves around helping people.  Other reasons for exploring nursing probably involve making more money, working in a safer environment, having more knowledge and responsibilities as well as more opportunities for advancement and leadership.

All of those are quite true. They also come with greater sacrifices and expectations. It’s very important to understand this point before you jump into a nursing program. First there’s a long, challenging and time-consuming learning process. You have to be good at math and science. That includes algebra, statistics, chemistry and anatomy and physiology.  You have to be able to read at a tenth-grade level at the least, and be fluent in the language of the nursing program. In the U.S. that means English, both spoken and written language. Being bilingual is a plus!

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