DQ 1: Discuss the correlation between nursing education and positive patient outcomes

DQ 1: Discuss the correlation between nursing education and positive patient outcomes

NRS 440 Topic 3 DQ 1

Discuss the correlation between nursing education and positive patient outcomes. Include current research that links patient safety outcomes to advanced degrees in nursing. Based on some real-life experiences, explain whether you agree or disagree with this research.

Advanced nursing education with continuing education is needed to ensure that nurses remain up to date in their profession. Lifelong learning comes in many forms of the nursing profession, such as workshops, conferences, enrollment in schools, nursing journals and continuing education units needed for license renewal. Expanding your nursing knowledge is the key to an excellent nursing career. Nursing educators are beneficial to encourage each potential graduate that continued education should be an ongoing focus for each nurse to improve patient care. The COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, social justice issues, health disparities, gender and race discrimination, and aging of a global population highlight issues transforming healthcare and are examples supporting the need for contemporary nursing education to be responsive so that undergraduate and graduate students can be prepared to be active agents in handling complex global health issues (M

DQ 1 Discuss the correlation between nursing education and positive patient outcomes

DQ 1 Discuss the correlation between nursing education and positive patient outcomes

orin, et al.,2021).


Higher educational preparation prepares nurses with more physiological, psychological, and social knowledge; better professional communication skills; and patient supervision ability (Liao et al., 2016). Modernization and technology have brought so much difference in the healthcare industry. New methods and procedures using new medicines and robotics made people live longer lives as compared to several years ago. Unfortunatley, these modernization and advancement give rise to newly discovered conditions and diseases. The major barrier to making progress in patient safety and quality is the failure to appreciate the complexity of the work in health care today (Masters, 2017). Nurses should have continued learning and continue to strive higher education for safe and quality health care delivery. Liao et al (2016) conducted a study on beneficial effect of nurse educational level on patient death and failure to rescue. Their finding include a 10% increase in the proportion of nurses with a bachelor’s degree or above in a hospital was associated with 1 fewer death for every 1000 inpatients and 1 fewer failure to rescue for inpatients with complications. I agree that there is a correlation between education and positive patient outcomes for nurses can learn more and develop their leadership skills when they have additional time spent in studying.

Liao, L.-M., Sun, X.-Y., Yu, H., & Li, J.-W. (2016). The association of nurse educational preparation and patient outcomes: Systematic review and meta-analysis. Nurse Education Today, 42, 9–16. https://doi-org.lopes.idm.oclc.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2016.03.029


Masters, K., (2017). Role development in professional nursing. Jones and Bartlett Learning

Good points in your discussion post. The link between nurse education and patient outcomes was confirmed in 2011 when Aiken published a study in Medical Care that found that a 10 percent increase in the proportion of BSN-prepared nurses reduced the risk of death by 5 percent. In 2013, Aiken co-authored a study in Health Affairs that found that hospitals that hired more BSN-prepared nurses between 199 and 2006 experienced greater declines in mortality than hospitals that did not add more BSN -prepared nurses. “We’ve established this association over and over again,” she said. “If hospitals really want to improve care, they should hire more nurses with bachelor’s degrees”.

“The body of evidence that we have now is pretty convincing that there is a correlation” between higher nurse education levels and better patient outcomes, Lindrooth said.


Building the Case for More Highly Educated Nurses. Retrieved from https://www.rwjf.org


Nice work Joseph, we can see lots of studies show the relationship between advanced education and better patient

DQ 1 Discuss the correlation between nursing education and positive patient outcomes

DQ 1 Discuss the correlation between nursing education and positive patient outcomes

outcome. For instance, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) has determined that the greater the number of nurses prepared at the baccalaureate level, the better prepared the nursing workforce is to address complex needs (Thomas, 2018). The IOM also suggests that by 2020, 80% of the nursing workforce should consist of baccalaureate degree-prepared nurses, and baccalaureate level nursing degrees should become the entry point of general nursing practice (Thomas, 2018). It also explained the direct influence of nursing education on patient care and safety, especially in this evolving healthcare system.


Thomas, J. (2018). Professional development. In Trends in Health Care: A Nursing Perspective. Grand Canyon University (Ed). https://lc.gcumedia.com/nrs440vn/trends-in-health-care-a-nursing-perspective/v1.1/#/chapter/3

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One of the initiatives established by the Institute of Medicines report on nursing was to increase the amount of baccalaureate level nurses in the workforce to 80% by 2020 (Thomas, 2018). The reason behind this recommendation is because research has shown that there is a strong correlation between level of nursing education and positive patient outcomes. BSN programs emphasize the development of critical thinking and clinical reasoning skills that are necessary for the level of decision making that happens within the field of nursing (Thomas, 2018). These decision making skills are associated with better patient outcomes and reduced morbidity and mortality. For example, a study published in 2014 found that a 10% increase in BSN nurses was associated with lowering patient mortality rates by 10.9% (AACN, 2019). Furthermore, a cross-sectional study published in 2013 found that hospitals with a higher percentage of BSN nurses had lower rates of congestive heart failure mortality, hospital acquired ulcers, post operative complications and an overall shorter length of stay (AACN, 2019). This findings are significant and warrant the push towards increasing the number of BSN prepared nurses.

In my experience I do think it depends more on the person than the degree. Someone with drive to become the best nurse they can be will likely end up pursuing higher levels of education in order to keep up with a constantly evolving medical field, if they have the opportunity to. I agree that BSN prepared nurses have had more opportunity to develop skills in research and evidence-based practice which is beneficial to patient outcomes. On the other hand, many classmates in my ADN program had other jobs or careers before nursing and/or had families and children at home. I believe this is probably more so true of ADN programs than BSN programs due to cost, competitiveness, schedule flexibility etc. This gives them valuable life experiences that cannot necessarily be taught in school that helps shape them into well rounded nurses. This is why I think RN to BSN programs are especially valuable and I agree nurses should strive to pursue higher levels of education.



American Association of Colleges of Nursing [AACN]. (2019, April). The impact of education on nursing practice. http://www.aacnnursing.org/News-Information/Fact-Sheets/Impact-of-Educaton


Thomas, J. (2018). Professional development. In Trends in Health Care: A Nursing Perspective. Grand Canyon University (Ed). https://lc.gcumedia.com/nrs440vn/trends-in-health-care-a-nursing-perspective/v1.1/#/chapter/3



Thank you for your post! I agree that, nurses that have life experience have many things to offer to patients besides school knowledge. Also, I have to add that ADN-BSN programs not only include RNs trying to get their BSN, but also students that cannot afford or choose not to go through a BSN on it’s entirety and instead, choose to take both degrees at the same time. These BSN nurses will not have experience on the floor, but they also have a lot to offer if they check the requirements to be a good nurse, such as drive. Now, I have imagined this question as the hypothetical case an RN and BSN have the same experience in life and work, but one has a more advanced degree than the other. This is when I think “okay, BSN nurses actually do have more knowledge in management and cultural competencies, informatics, and other areas, which could make taking care of patients easier”. I think this is why the IOM took into consideration the importance of BSN nurses, and set up a goal to have 80% the nursing staff to be BSN by 2020 (IOM, 2010). Either way, all nurses are good nurses as long as they are driven by vocation and really care for their patients!



IOM. (2010). Read “The future of nursing: Leading change, advancing health” at nap.edu. 7 Recommendations and Research Priorities | The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health |The National Academies Press. Retrieved August 9, 2022, from https://nap.nationalacademies.org/read/12956/chapter/12#276

Healthcare quality and patient safety can’t be maintained without the right knowledge and abilities. As a result, the quality of nursing education is crucial to the continuation of reliable medical treatment. Several studies have compared nurses’ education levels to their amount of experience in the field and found a correlation between the two. New knowledge and the training offered in higher-level programs are often credited with improving the quality of treatment offered to patients. Nurses are expected to make better judgments, more quickly, with fewer mistakes, and more effectively advise patients and their families if they have a deeper grasp of patient care and the healthcare system as a whole. Different outcomes have been evaluated in studies to objectively determine the existence of substantial changes attributable to the additional training delivered. This does not imply that less-educated nurses perform a poor job or pose a safety risk, but it does suggest that more advanced nursing education may make a difference in patient outcomes (Martin-Thornton, 2002). To evaluate, researchers have compared things like death rates, the prevalence of problems like heart failure and blood clots, the success or failure of attempts to revive patients, the prevalence of hospital-acquired infections, and so on.

Rahman et al. (2015) performed cross-sectional research in Malaysia to foresee the effect of nurses’ levels of education on service quality and patient safety in the medical and surgical wards of private hospitals in Malaysia. A total of 652 nurses from the medical and surgical wards at 12 private hospitals participated in a questionnaire survey for the research. No correlation was found between the education level of nurses and patient outcomes at private hospitals in Malaysia, according to the research. However, there were many caveats to the research, the most notable of which was the very low percentage of highly educated nurses.

I agree that higher education levels in nursing are associated with better patient safety results. Baccalaureate nursing programs go in-depth on topics including physical and social sciences, nursing research, public and community health, nursing administration, and the humanities, in addition to the content covered in associate and diploma degrees. The supplementary studies aid the student’s professional growth, equip the new nurse for a wider range of practice, and teach the student about the cultural, political, economic, and social concerns that impact patients and influence healthcare delivery.

Nursing care that is informed by a Christian worldview has been shown to have positive effects on patient outcomes. The principles upon which the framework rests are held profoundly and universally by nurses, patients, and their families. Christian ethics provide a framework for making judgments in clinical practice. Nurses who adopt a Christian worldview are better equipped to care for their patients. As a bonus, they may develop trusting connections with patients and their loved ones, rather than ones based on mistrust.



Abdul Rahman, H., Jarrar, M. K., & Don, M. S. (2015). Nurse Level of Education, Quality of Care and Patient Safety in the Medical and Surgical Wards in Malaysian Private Hospitals: A Cross-sectional Study. Global Journal of Health Science7(6). https://doi.org/10.5539/gjhs.v7n6p331

Martin‐Thornton, R. A. (2002). Training Entry‐Level Nurses. AWHONN Lifelines6(4), 295–298. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1552-6356.2002.tb00481.x

To answer this discussion question, one must first understand the meaning of a “lifelong learner”. Life long learning is the “ongoing, voluntary, and self-motivated pursuit of knowledge for either personal or professional reasons” (Roman-Cohen, 2020). What this means is that the person is determined to learn and understand a topic. In healthcare, there is constantly something new to learn, a new process to change, a new way of doing a task available. A person can be a lifelong learner without an advanced degree. They can have optimal patient outcomes without additional letters behind their name. Research is varied on the subject of if advanced degrees increase positive patient outcomes. Some research suggests that “higher nurse education is associated with lower risks of mortality and failure to rescue” yet the same study mentions that more research is needed on the topic to find a true association (Audet, et al., 2018). If we think back to pre-pandemic times, the goal was the majority of nurses needed to be BSN prepared nurses. However, realism hit hard when the pandemic hit and simply any nurse was needed. Did the BSN prepared nurse work harder than the ADN prepared nurse? No. Were outcomes increased due to a higher degree during covid? No: No one knew what to do with these patients and everyone was working hard, researching their way through the treatment of the virus. The BSN degree prepares nurses to be advanced in managerial skills and to have better critical thinking skills, but it is not quite fair to say that just because a nurse has a BSN that they are a more prepared nurse than one that has many years of experience and has an ADN. I take this stand not because I do not agree with increasing education (because I love learning and love reaching new goals), but I work with some of the smartest, most amazing nurses who do not have their BSN but are constantly learning and perfecting their craft.

The christian worldview plays a part in patient outcomes because humans were made in the image of christ. We are there to take care of those who need us with care, compassion, and dignity.


Audet, L-A., Bourgault, P., & Rochefort, C. M. (2018). Associations between nurse education and experience and the risk of mortality and adverse events in acute care hospitals: A systematic review of observational studies. International journal of nursing studies. 80. 128-146. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2018.01.007

Roman-Cohen, T. (2020). Follow these four simple steps to become and lifelong learner. https://www.mba.com/business-school-and-careers/career-possibilities/follow-these-four-simple-steps-to-become-a-lifelong-learner