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Can an ANCC Magnet requirement result in hospitals hiring nurses who have BSNs from other countries instead of ADNs from the U.S.?

Monday September 9, 2013
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Dear Donna,

Can an ANCC Magnet requirement result in discriminating against new associate degree graduate RNs? I am a new ADN who had been looking for a job in a hospital in the Los Angeles area for the last
six months.

I just learned from a nurse recruiter that ADNs have a huge disadvantage when applying for hospital jobs. Hospitals planning to apply for Magnet recognition now prefer foreign graduate nurses because they have BSNs. When these foreign graduate nurses come to the U.S., colleges and universities do not recognize their BSN. Even accreditation agencies do not recognize these degrees. If you sit down with a college or university counselor, they would recommend the student take more courses before their nursing degree can be recognized.

I am sorry to say that these requirements have resulted in a practice that discriminates against nurses who get their education in the local community colleges here in the U.S. I am hoping that ANCC could make changes on this requirement and recommend to the hospitals to count only BSNs obtained
in the U.S.

RN Made in the USA

Dear Donna replies:

Dear RN Made in the USA,

The challenge you are encountering has nothing to do with ANCC, discrimination or foreign educated nurses. But if you choose to focus on that you may miss what is actually happening and miss the boat in the process. Read “New nurse, new job strategies”

The healthcare environment has gotten much more complex over the last several decades requiring a better prepared and well-rounded nursing workforce. Plus, there is a growing body of research that shows that when a hospital has a higher percentage of BSN nurses, patient outcomes are better.

As a result of all this, most U.S. hospitals, whether they have Magnet status or not, require a majority of nurses to have a BSN. That trend will continue. And just for the record, when a foreign educated nurse comes to this country, he or she is not automatically granted US RN status. That nurse has to go through a lengthy and often costly process of getting their education credentials verified, etc. Some U.S.nurses assume that foreign educated nurses are flooding into this country taking their jobs and thus the tight job market. Not so. Because of the tight hospital job market, fewer and fewer foreign-educated nurses are coming here to work because there are no jobs for them.

Read the above-referenced article not only to understand what is happening and why, but also to learn what it takes to find and get a job in today's competitive and changing healthcare market. All nurses, whether new or experienced, need to look in new directions for employment and need new skills to find and get those jobs.

I understand your frustration, and I hear it all the time from other new nurses. But when what you're doing isn't working, it's time to try a new approach. Be proactive in your job search rather than reactive. If you take all of the advice in the article, I am confident that you will be able to kick start your nursing career. It may not be where you envisioned it starting, but the important thing is to move forward.

Best wishes,

Donna Cardillo, RN, MA, well-known career guru, is Nurse.com’s “Dear Donna” and author of “Your First Year as a Nurse: Making the Transition from Total Novice to Successful Professional” and “The ULTIMATE Career Guide for Nurses: Practical Advice for Thriving at Every Stage of Your Career.” Information about the books is available at www.Nurse.com/CE/7010 and www.Nurse.com/CE/7250, respectively. To ask Donna your question, go to www.Nurse.com/Asktheexperts/Deardonna. Find a “Dear Donna” seminar near you: Call 800-866-0919 or visit http://www. Nurse.com/Events.