Nurses with BSNs are qualified to take on a higher level of clinical responsibility, and as a result, receive higher salaries than those with ADNs. This standard of care is so much greater that the Institute of Medicine called for 80% of the country’s nurses to have BSNs by 2020.
Arkansas’s nursing community responded aggressively to this call to action and formed the Arkansas Action Coalition to transform the future of nursing in Arkansas by working to increase the number of BSN-educated nurses in the state. In 2013, there were 1,787 students enrolled in BSN programs in Arkansas according to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.
The Coalition also began offering a Young Leaders program in 2015 providing leadership mentorships to BSN students as a way to increase the number of BSN educated nurses in leadership positions.
RNs in Arkansas with BSNs Receive Higher Salaries Than Those with ADNs
The increase in salaries for RNs who have BSNs is apparent in the Advance Healthcare Network for Nurses 2013 survey of RN salaries in the Southern part of the United States. According to the survey, nurses with BSNs in this region earned $3,555 a year more on average than those with ADNs:
- BSN $60,969
- ADN $57,414
The US Department of Labor provides additional information on the salaries of nurses with BSNs in its analysis of top-earning RNs in Arkansas. This further demonstrates that BSN-educated RNs in Arkansas tend to earn more on average than their peers in the rest of the southern states:
The Arkansas Department of Workforce Services has partnered with the US Department of Labor to provide funding for Arkansas workers to enroll in nursing programs. The Arkansas Partnership for Nursing is administering grant funding of over $4.9 million between 2012 and 2016 to increase the number of nurses in the state, with a special emphasis on BSN education.
Salaries for BSN Prepared RNs in the Major Regions of Arkansas
The average salary for nurses with BSNs varies throughout Arkansas. The US Department of Labor provides an analysis of their salaries in key regions of the state: