Advanced Degree in Nursing Essay

Excerpt from Essay :


The objective of this study is to examine graduate level nursing. Towards this end, this study will review the literature relating to graduate level nursing.

According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing the present health-care system is presently undergoing a transformation. The report states that when a child is brought into the clinic to receive treatment for such as an earache, rather than being seen by a physician, the nurse practitioner makes provision of care for the child. As well, when patients are being prepared for surgery there are various specialists moving about in the surgery room however, it is not a physician that has been trained for administration of the anesthesia but instead it is a certified nurse anesthetist. (paraphrased)

Expansion of the Nursing Practitioner Role

The role of the nurse practitioner has undergone great expansion in recent years enabled by the master's degree in nursing. It is this degree that enables advanced practice nurses to work in the role of nurse practitioner, certified nurse midwife, certified clinical nurse specialists and certified nurse anesthetist. Nurse practitioner additionally conducts such as physical exams as well as diagnoses and treats common acute illnesses and injuries. In addition, nurse practitioners manage chronic problems including diabetes, high blood pressures as well as ordering lab services and x-rays. Nurse practitioners also provide care in the areas of prenatal care and gynecology and deliver babies in hospitals as well as in private settings. Nurse practitioner also provides follow-up and postpartum care.

II. Nursing Education

It is reported that there is a shortage of primary care physicians and that the answer to this is more advanced practice registered nurses who have specialty training. As a shortage of primary care physicians continues, local university officials say they see a need for more advanced practice registered nurses with specialty training. Recommendations stated by the Institute of Medicine and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing include that all advanced practice nurses by 2015 be educated at the doctoral level. Recommend that by 2015, all advanced practice nurses should be educated at the doctoral level. Education at the doctoral level for advanced practice nurses is offered online by some universities who understand that adult students are more than likely employed full time and are in need of such education accommodations. For example, reported is: "The University of Scranton offers traditional master's degree programs in nursing for advanced practice nurses with specialization in either the family nurse practitioner program, adult health nursing program or nurse anesthesia program. It also offers other advanced certifications." (Allabaugh, 2014, p. 1) Earning a Doctor of Nursing Practice is reported to make provision of a "a major avenue for employment in the future, with the need for advanced practice registered nurses popping up in places like urgent care centers, hospital clinics and physician offices, The average starting salary advanced practice registered nurses can expect is $85,000 to $95,000 a year while experienced ones can earn more than $100,000 a year…" (Allabaugh, 2014, p. 1) It is reported that the Affordable Care Act combined with the shortage of primary care physicians particularly in rural areas of the U.S. means that there will be a need for more advanced practice nurses in the future

III. Present Statistics on Nurses Entering the Workforce

The work of Kutney-Lee and Aiken (2013) published by the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics states as follows: "The nursing workforce plays a central role in our present health care system, and will likely have an even greater role in the future. Nurses already provide the vast majority of care to patients in hospitals, and so it should come as no surprise that the quality of nursing care affects patient outcomes. Over the past decade, studies have linked certain nursing characteristics -- such as staffing levels, education, job satisfaction, and work environment -- with better outcomes in hospitals." (p. 1)Additionally reported is that the "educational pathway for entry into nursing varies: about 60% of new registered nurses graduate from associate's degree programs, 36% from…

Sources Used in Document:


Accelerated Nursing Programs (2014) American Association of Colleges of Nursing. Retrieved from:

Allabaugh, D. (2014) Growth Expected in Graduate Level Nurses. The Times Tribune. Retrieved from:

Kutney-Lee, A. And Aiken, LH (2013) The Case of Baccalaureate-Prepared Nurses. LDI Issue Brief. Vol. 18, Issue 6. May/June 2013. Retrieved from:

Nursing to Become Graduate-Level Job (2009) The Guardian. Retrieved from:

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