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Role Transition from LVN to BSN Paper:
The purpose of this assignment is to document the role transition from LVN to BSN. Describe the process for nurses to gain knowledge, skills, and change attitude in order to impact nursing and improve patient care.
Write in 3rd person, essay format, use minimum 3 scholarly references, and follow APA formatting guidelines.

Grading Rubric for Role Transitions Paper

The purpose of this assignment is to document the role transition from LVN to RN/BSN. Describe the process for nurses to gain knowledge, skills, and change attitude in order to impact nursing and improve patient care.

Challenges Faced During LVN to BSN Role Transition

To socialize and enter into a complex and challenging professional role, educated Licensed Vocational Nurses (LVNs) upgrade their credentials to Bachelor of Nursing (BN) degree. This role transition encompasses professional socialization to become a part of learning process in professional role and to emerge as a part of the occupational culture (Tower et al., 2015). For continuing of their education, they face challenges during the role transition to BN from LVN. The time of transition from LVN to BN is stressful, as nurses have to face unrealistic expectations due to rigor and flexibility of nursing program. Therefore, the following discussion involves the process of gaining knowledge, skills and change in attitude that impact their nursing and improving patient care.

During the LVN course, nurses work with BNs in hospitals in various nursing home hospitals. They work side by side with them to know about patient care and understand stress and challenges nurses face in the provision of care (Walters, 2004). LVNs perform tasks like checking blood pressures, changing dressings, bathing and dressing patients within the scope of vocational nurse and under the supervision of BNs. They also provide bedside care, sterilization procedure and medication administration, IVs. They have the ability to understand the abnormal from normal readings in their patients; however, their medical care is limited. LVNs have limited scope in performing tasks depending on their opportunities and now they perform work outside hospitals in outpatient centers (Kearney-Nunnery, 2016).  

During the transition, their scope for practice and commitment towards education is fit; however it changes as they take up more responsibility advancing in their careers. Bedside care is the preliminary scope of practice for LVN being more task-oriented; however, BNs focus on the overall bigger picture analyzing issues deeply considering underlying conditions in relation to patient’s status (Eliopoulos, 2013). There is change in skills and knowledge acquisition in LVN program and they perform their own assessment, however, and BN performs initial assessment working in conjunction with them. As LVNs, they exhibit their knowledge in patient care plans formulated by BN taken into action (Duphily, 2014).

For becoming a BN, LVN needs to develop critical-thinking skills while transitioning to the new role. This skill is important to assess health of patient, detect changes in health, symptoms, and take action as required. LVNs need to get involved in the gathering of patients’ information like patient history, conducting and analyzing lab work, administration of various medication and treatments (Potter et al., 2016). In addition, BSNs also need to work with patients and families in making treatments plans and health conditions. The key difference lies in the fact that BSNs work in accordance with physicians aiding in treatment plans and health conditions where BSNs are not involved in the determination of course of patient care and supervise LVNs in their work (Chan, 2013). Critical thinking skills are required for gaining proper clinical knowledge and excel in their education in understanding and recognizing problems of patient. LVNs need to be competent and acquire self-sufficiency through the skills of critical thinking adapting to the new changes while role transition being an essential trait judging situations and taking appropriate decisions. This period need certain adjustment for the LVNs to adapt while transitioning to BSNs. Communication skills are also important, as BSNs need to communicate directly with patients in answering their questions and clearing their doubts. Empathetic communication is required in understanding situation and reduce patient anxiety. This also involves being compassionate and sympathetic towards patient’s needs and preferences (McCaffrey et al., 2012).

Gaining Skills and Attitude Change

The process of gaining skills and attitude change can be achieved through Continuous Professional Development (CPD) where LVNs can widen their knowledge and experience by participating in accredited courses, short course, learning activities through self-directed learning completing minimum hours of CPD relevant to BSNs context of practice (Lammintakanen & Kivinen, 2012). Evidence-based practice (EBP) can help new BSNs to harness knowledge on floor by informing EBPs. This can be achieved through hands-on-experience theorizing, hypothesizing and structuring studies and by collecting evidence leading to better care fulfilling the goal of nursing practice (Stevens, 2013).

Role transition and change is important to function effectively with the multi-disciplinary teams and nursing to achieve the goals of improving patient care with better health outcomes. Kurt Lewin developed Change Theory that identified change through three stages; unfreezing, transition and refreezing. Unfreezing refers to seeking out of environment maintaining a sense of control and requires substantial support to unfreeze and provide motivation for readiness to change. Transition stage focuses on change in journey from LVN to BSN where they need to acquire knowledge and skills to become comfortable in their new role. The final stage, refreezing is establishment of new place of stability where they work at low efficiency level and await for next change (Burnes & Cooke, 2013).

Transition and socialization processes are the main change processes. While pursuing BSN, LVNs need to get better equipped with skills and navigate them from unfreezing to refreezing during nursing practice of lifelong learning (Dinmohammadi, Peyrovi & Mehrdad, 2013). For the goal setting process, LVNs need to acquire excellent communication skills, as one is the provider of indirect and direct care to patients, families, communities, groups and populations. In order to provide complete care, they need to have good communication skills and good listener acknowledging the needs and preferences of patients. Good communication and interpersonal skills directly influence patient outcomes as it helps to calm down patients in understanding the situation and reduce patient anxiety. Effective communication and collaborative work with members of the healthcare team help to deliver patient-centered and safe care improving health outcomes of patients (Kourkouta & Papathanasiou, 2014).

Educational changes take place while transitioning from LVN to BSN. LVNs need to fulfill general requirements in their coursework including English communication, information technology and literacy, arts and humanities, quantitative reasoning, mathematical concepts and biological and physical sciences (Zorek & Raehl, 2013). Moreover, the nursing core course in BSN program includes health assessment, professional nursing values, pharmacology, nursing research, nursing models, theories, nursing management, and leadership. Clinical requirements include variety of settings; psychosocial nursing, medical-surgical, child-health and community nursing that help LVNs to complete their clinical experiences. Therefore, while transitioning from LVN to BSN, nurses become eligible for advanced nursing practice end up working as unit leaders, clinical educators and nurse managers in Canada.

References

Burnes, B., & Cooke, B. (2013). Kurt Lewin's Field Theory: A Review and Re?evaluation. International journal of management reviews, 15(4), 408-425.

Chan, Z. C. (2013). A systematic review of critical thinking in nursing education. Nurse Education Today, 33(3), 236-240.

Dinmohammadi, M., Peyrovi, H., & Mehrdad, N. (2013, January). Concept analysis of professional socialization in nursing. In Nursing forum (Vol. 48, No. 1, pp. 26-34).

Duphily, N. (2014). Transitioning From LPN/LVN to BSN. Springer Publishing Company, pp. 53-56.

Eliopoulos, C. (2013). Gerontological nursing. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. 

Kearney-Nunnery, R. (2016). Advancing your career: Concepts of professional nursing (6th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: F.A. Davis Company.

Kourkouta, L., & Papathanasiou, I. V. (2014). Communication in nursing practice. Materia socio-medica, 26(1), 65.

Lammintakanen, J., & Kivinen, T. (2012). Continuing professional development in nursing: does age matter?. Journal of workplace learning, 24(1), 34-47.

McCaffrey, R., Hayes, R. M., Cassell, A., Miller?Reyes, S., Donaldson, A., & Ferrell, C. (2012). The effect of an educational programme on attitudes of nurses and medical residents towards the benefits of positive communication and collaboration. Journal of advanced nursing, 68(2), 293-301.

Potter, P. A., Perry, A. G., Stockert, P., & Hall, A. (2016). Fundamentals of Nursing-E-Book. Elsevier Health Sciences.

Stevens, K. (2013). The impact of evidence-based practice in nursing and the next big ideas. OJIN: The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 18(2), 4.

Tower, M., Cooke, M., Watson, B., Buys, N., & Wilson, K. (2015). Exploring the transition experiences of students entering into preregistration nursing degree programs with previous professional nursing qualifications: an integrative review. Journal of clinical nursing, 24(9-10), 1174-1188.

Walters, B. (2004). Nurse’s fast facts: Your quick source to core clinical content (3rd ed.). Philadelphia, PA: F.A. Davis

Zorek, J., & Raehl, C. (2013). Interprofessional education accreditation standards in the USA: a comparative analysis. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 27(2), 123-130.

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