One of the fastest growing sectors of the American economy is the health care field, especially care relating to elder and hospice care. A growing population, coupled with a new understanding of how important end-of-life care can be for the patient and loved ones alike, has made hospice care an increasing component of the health care system. One result of this emphasis has been an expanding need for hospice care program administrators who are capable of managing both the medical and organizational needs of a hospice. Hospice care requires a different attitude than other forms of medical care. Patients in a hospice are entering their final stages of life, and the responsibility of the staff and management is to assist them in living out their final days in comfort and dignity. In addition to traditional forms of medical care, a hospice care program administrator must assist doctors in setting up patient treatment plans that consider these factors, as well as interacting with the family and friends of the patient.
For registered nurses (RNs) to become a hospice administrator, it is necessary to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. An RN to BSN online program allows nurses to take classes while maintaining her current employment. Completion of the program is vital for the continued professional and personal development of a RN.
The BSN qualifies the student to engage in actions that are not directly related to the bedside treatment of patients. These include administrative and supervisory duties, as well as assisting doctors in planning and administering the patient’s care plan. The BSN thus prepares the graduate with the high-level supervisory skills that will be needed when administering a hospice.
Finally, completing a RN to BSN program prepares the nurse for handling the integration of care across a number of settings. This can be vitally important in a hospice, as many patients will be interacting with the hospice medical staff, their own primary care physician, and outside specialists who will be dealing with the patient’s specific condition. In this case, the BSN prepares the hospice care program administrator to maintain an efficient, yet caring, environment for the patients and staff alike.
The BSN is a natural part of the professional development of the nurse, opening far more in the way of professional opportunities to him or her. The rise of hospice care as a major growth industry in the United States makes it plain that there will be an increasing need for qualified hospice care program administrators. It is this demand that makes obtaining a BSN such a wise professional choice for current registered nurses.