GRAND RAPID — Talk all you like about the new economy, but the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) says demand has transformed nursing into one of the nation’s fastest-growing professions.
Too, a federal advisory panel has recommended that at least two-thirds of the basic nurse workforce hold a baccalaureate or higher degree in nursing by 2010.
This is Aquinas College’s pitch for more people to consider such careers through its bachelor of science nursing program.
According to Aquinas, such a degree nowadays opens students not only to the physical and behavioral sciences, but also to management concepts and community health.
One way or the other, the college points to the BLS advisory that over the next half-decade, employment for registered nurses will grow more rapidly than the average of all other occupations.
It also projects that by the end of this decade, the demand for RNs will begin to exceed the supply.
Such projections in part simply are an extrapolation of the demography of the United States.
Thanks to more complex and effective medical care, more and more people are living longer and longer until, nearing the end of life, they call upon more complex and effective medical care to extend life.
And the interface between patient and doctor in the ever-expanding clinical setting calls for ever more of the people whose understanding of physiology, disease and medicine is sufficiently broad as to be able to safely carry forth the physician’s instructions.
More people, more care and longer life simply demands more nurses.
But the demand is not simply for more RNs, but reportedly for RNs across an array of settings, from primary care centers, nursing homes, community clinics and hospital outpatient facilities to health maintenance organizations, home care agencies and managed care companies.
Graduates are able to practice across a range of settings, such as hospitals, clinics, schools and home care agencies. Nurses are needed, too, in general education in order to promote good health practices and habits in childhood.