Why Is Upskilling Important for Nurses?

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Nurses are a fundamental part of our society. They are independent and licensed entities providing healthcare services to people and play an elementary role in improving health standards. Ideally, they are the life-savers as the profession is all about caring and building trust with patients to recoup the quality of life. 

The emergence of technology has laid some new treatment methods in healthcare, which require advanced soft and hard skills. The majority of nurses fail to acquire enough chances to remain equipped with the latest treatment methods and transformations in the field. It might be due to external or internal factors such as insufficient funds, extreme workload, inflexible work and study hours, etc. 

However, whatever the reasons might be, training and development of the nursing staff are essential to provide the best healthcare services. Coaching of the nurses will not only amplify efficiency but also increase job satisfaction and career development. This article lists some of the important reasons that emphasize the importance of upskilling in nurses.

  • Policy development

Nurses being a vital unit of healthcare systems, need to achieve higher education to know the implications of practical and theoretical knowledge. Nurses with upgraded knowledge, expertise, and the required skills such as critical thinking contribute to implementing new policies. The current education system includes education methods and curriculum, which covers broader aspects of the profession. It further aims to equip nurses with the skills required in the healthcare setting. Considering the rise in healthcare needs, more and more nurses are now opting for online education programs to fulfill their growing professional demands. In fact, healthcare institutions also encourage nurses to enroll in the available online BSN to MSN programs to equip themselves with the required leadership and management skills.

  • Cultural diversity

Considering today’s modern world, healthcare professionals have to deal with many cultural and linguistic challenges when treating patients from different backgrounds. An absence of cultural understanding increases negative perceptions and ineffective treatment outcomes, resulting in nurses’ lesser job engagement. Hence, nurses need to upskill to remain acquainted with the emerging socio-cultural differences and the strategies to deal with them. According to studies, education institutions need to provide situation-specific training to the nurses to compete with the growing demands. 

  • Keeping pace with new technology

With the changing trends in technology, every profession demands keeping pace with the advancements. Technology-based training enables nurses to understand when and how to make use of technology. Since technology integration has proved fruitful in yielding better performance in the field, screen-based simulation techniques might help nurses in mitigating patients’ issues in real-time. However, in situations like the recent pandemic, more and more healthcare staff switched to telemedicine to avoid contracting the deadly virus. Perhaps, lack of technical skills under such conditions might risk healthcare quality and its everyday operations.

  • Educating patients

Another essential duty performed by nurses is to educate patients about their health concerns. It helps them in understanding their health status. However, in most cases, educating patients about their health increases the chances of a speedy recovery. Perhaps, without knowing about health issues, a patient may resume unhealthy habits leading to deteriorating health conditions. Thus, nurses may need to readjust their treatment methods according to the patient’s mental understanding. Since the current healthcare system emphasizes following a patient-centered approach, upskilling in their profession might help them understand and implement the best treatment methods.

  • Career Orientation

According to research, the healthcare sector might face a shortage of well-equipped nurses due to the UK’s growing ratio of the aged population. Similarly, retaining nurses in the workforce is another challenge faced by the healthcare industry. Better working conditions such as a manageable workload, empowered employees, and appraisals are significant to employee retention. Hence, upskilling nurses might help in increasing the rate of job retention and career advancement opportunities. It is further important to train them with the necessary leadership qualities to make them aware of the healthcare system’s complexities and ways to cope with them. Since most nurses face burnout issues, training programs can help them learn stress management strategies.

  • Improved Nursing Practices

Upskilling in nurses helps them to add significant improvements in their everyday work practices. It is essential to design a curriculum that fulfills the updated healthcare needs and demands. Those engaged in the nursing profession understand the dire need of acquiring BSN to Masters in nursing online and on-site programs for better nursing practices. 

  • Providing Optimal Care to Patients

The ability to provide high-quality, effective, safe, and patient-centered services depends on satisfied, motivated, and skilled staff personnel. In developing countries, the shortage of skilled healthcare workers is the main bottleneck resulting in compromised healthcare services. Healthcare institutions worldwide are finding out new and innovative ways to deploy workforces in regions lacking proper treatment facilities. Therefore, they need to educate and train their existing nursing staff to meet the global shortage. Studies reveal that registered nurses with more advanced levels of education provide optimal care to the patients. They have contributed to reducing the mortality rate by 5 percent. 

  • Delivering Successful Immunization Programs

Immunization refers to the controlling and annihilation of life-threatening diseases. Countries worldwide are establishing a list of accredited courses for nurses to carry out immunization programs effectively. For this purpose, nurses need to pursue different training and education courses to acquire the required knowledge, expertise, and commitment to practice as an immunization service provider. It is worth mentioning that with the growing need for healthcare services during the pandemic, it is crucial to encourage more and more nurses to be a part of these learning and training programs.

Conclusion

Currently, the role of nurses is not as diverse as it is supposed to be. Some of the drawbacks include a lack of a central registration system and educational support by hospitals. The opportunity to continue professional growth and development is significant to enhance healthcare services’ efficiency and effectiveness. 

Since most of these training programs are too costly, not every nurse can afford them. Therefore, there is a dire need to upskill the existing nurses and provide them the required sources for further education. Introducing training programs is mandatory to ensure consistency in improving healthcare services.