Nursing Education and Continuing Education

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Continuing Education In Nursing Education

Nursing Education and Continuing Education

Whats is Continuing Education,Implementation of Continuing Education In Nursing,Impact of Continuing Education,Outcomes of Continuing Education.

Whats is Continuing Education

    Continuing education is an instructional program for adults, consisting of nursing courses in a particular area of knowledge and expertise to increase the learner's knowledge and skills in order to provide competent patient care. The purpose of continuing education in nursing is to enhance knowledge, skills, and confidence of professional nurses to provide high quality, competent, and safe patient care (Tame, 2013). The complexities of health care necessitate the professional nurse to continually obtain education

Implementation of Continuing Education In Nursing

    Continuing education can be provided by academic and health care institutions for the professional registered nurse (RN) to achieve the necessary education to fulfill current or prospective positions in nursing, Hospitals may require completion of a certain number of continuing education credits within a particular time frame .

    Continuing education may be a requirement for state licensure and/or specialty certification. These requirements may be yearly or over the duration of the licensing and certification periods. Regional, state, and national nursing organizations may offer continuing education courses to members and nonmembers as a means to fulfill the specified requirements. The individual is given a choice of topics and scheduling options. Specialty organizations may also offer courses in specific areas to provide the individual with expertise, knowledge, and skill in the specialty domain that may not be found from other sources.

    Continuing education programs and courses can be offered using various methods and media. Nurses can attend live sessions offered at conferences, workshops, and short-term courses offered through colleges/universities, professional organizations, continuing education companies, and health care organizations. Some benefits of live in person sessions are asking real time questions, getting immediate feedback, and networking. Another benefit with live in person sessions is that a recording can be made of the session for review at another time. Some barriers to this method of instruction include lack of technology, time requirements, travel, and cost.

    Some nurses may choose to use written ten methods of continuing education. This is accomplished through journal and magazine articles as well as information sent via postal mail by an organization or company, Completing the offering in a timely manner convenient to the learner is a benefit of written methods. Journal clubs have been used by health care institutions to encourage reading and synthesis of material. 

    This form of continuing education has been reported by Nesbitt as beneficial in establishing community, encouraging, confidence, and making an impact on practice. The written form of continuing education allows colleagues to network outside of the work environment and promote reflection on practice.e-Learning is one of the fastest growing methods of providing continuing nursing education. 

    The possibilities are endless and allow for flexibility and cost-effective ways to provide the educational materials, Participants can choose from a wide variety of educational offerings including, but not limited to, live and recorded webinars, video and audio conferencing, round table discussions, Articles posted on websites, and virtual classrooms, e-Learning can be combined with live in person sessions for those who are unable to attend the live session.

    Continuing education, regardless of the method of delivery, further develops the knowledge and confidence of nurses. It also facilitates collaboration with colleagues and a healthy questioning of practice by nurses, physicians, and other health care professionals (Tame, 2013). Because of the multitude of delivery methods for continuing education, nurses are able to obtain the education necessary to be current in practice.

Impact of Continuing Education

    Technological Advancements, Increasing Number of Pharmaceuticals, and Increased Patient Complexity Have presented nursing and Other Healthcare Professionals With Profession ssion of revelopment. The need for competent and safe care has also led to the requirements and mandates for continuing education for licensure, certification, and credentialing at institutions.

    The state nurse practice act guides the professional nurse to provide safe, competent care by fulfilling the requirements of the state board of nursing. It also encourages familiarity with the guidelines and requirements necessary for professional practice. Such motivators are one of the impetuses to obtain continued education in nursing (Pawlyn, 2012; Russell, 2013).

    Motivators to complete continuing education can be intrinsic or extrinsic. Regulatory requirements are key motivators. Schweitzer and Krassa (2010) reported extrinsic factors as weak motivators for completion of continuing education. The personal and professional benefits of continuing education were identified as key factors for success. Motivators related to success were remaining current with knowledge and skills, providing immediate practice benefits, advancing in a new position, interacting with colleagues, and applying research and evidence to practice (Nalle, Wyatt, & Myers, 2010; Schweitzer & Krassa, 2010) . Nalle et al. (2010) reported personal and professional interests as being the primary reason for participation in continuing education. 

    A combination of intrinsic and extrinsic motivators is considered to be most ideal for providing continuing education. As there are motivators for attending courses there are also barriers. Time constraints and conflicts, family obligations, finances, fatigue, difficulty getting off work, and the interiority of the course are some of the main barriers (Baxter et al, 2013; Nalle et al. 2010; Schweitzer & Krassa, 2010). Ways to help nurses overcome barriers are imperative to successful course attendance. Flexibility through combination of offerings helps to accomplish overcoming barriers. Courses that are readily accessible, affordable, and take into consideration time constraints of individuals promote successful course completion (Baxter et al, 2013).

    Continuing education leads to increased job satisfaction and decreased levels of burnout while updating professional skills (Schweitzer & Krassa. 2010). In addition, continuing education leads to increased empowerment and decreased intent to leave a current position. Higher levels of perceived empowerment among critical care and emergency nurses as well as fewer reports of intent to leave a current position among these certified nurses were reported. Continuing education is a major component of the requirements for initial and continued certification and may be a reason for these findings (Fitzpatrick, Campo, & Gacki-Smith, 2013; Fitzpatrick, Campo, Graham, & Lavendaro, 2010).

Outcomes of Continuing Education

    Fulfillment of mandatory requirements and patient needs, as well as meeting the personal and professional demands of practice while supporting the learner, is the goal of continuing education. Innovative methods to deliver high-quality continuing education courses need to be a priority of educators, clinicians, and professional organizations to maintain the ever-changing and expanding standards of patient care. 

    Financial considerations can significantly impact the delivery of such programs and requires careful consideration. Interprofessional continuing educational offerings with shared resources can help to minimize financial burdens of providing courses. Sharing of simulation labs, integration of eLearning methodologies, and multisite offerings can also help reduce the cost of educational programs.

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