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North Shore-LIJ Becomes NY's First Health System to Require New Nurses to Get Bachelor's Degree
Date:7/8/2010

Higher Levels of Nursing Education Improve Quality and Patient Care

Great Neck, NY (Vocus) July 8, 2010 -- As nursing assumes an increasingly prominent role in the delivery of care during this new era of healthcare reform, the North Shore-LIJ Health System announced today it will soon require newly hired nurses to have a Bachelor of Nursing Science (BSN) degree or earn one within five years. This new requirement takes effect on September 1.

All new nurses who do not have a BSN must enroll in a bachelor’s degree program within 24 months of their hire date and earn their degree within five years. For more than a decade, North Shore-LIJ has offered tuition assistance to employees for BSN degrees as well as flexible onsite nursing degree programs with several Long Island universities and colleges.

Nurses on staff at North Shore-LIJ who have not earned their BSNs are exempt from the new policy, however, nurse executives and hospital leaders are strongly encouraging employees to continue their education and take advantage of the health system’s tuition reimbursement program, which has helped thousands of nurses at the system keep up with current and future demands.

Michael Dowling, North Shore-LIJ’s president and chief executive officer, said the new requirement is based on research that shows a significant relationship between higher levels of nursing education and improved quality outcomes, lower mortality and fewer adverse events. “As patient care becomes more complex and high-tech, there is growing evidence that developing a more highly educated nursing workforce improves patient safety and leads to higher-quality, more cost-effective patient care,” said Mr. Dowling.

In 2009, a bill was introduced in the New York State Legislature to require registered professional nurses to attain a BSN degree within 10 years of their initial
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North Shore-LIJ Becomes NY's First Health System to Require New Nurses to Get Bachelor's Degree 
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