As stated by Melrose and Wishart (2013), RN’s study for a longer period of time and have more in depth scope of practice and have greater knowledge in decision making, critical thinking, leadership, research utilization, resource management and healthcare delivery systems.
An RN focuses on greater understanding of patient care and identifies the need for involvement of other health professionals (Melrose &Wishart, 2013). RPN’s focus on collecting data such as vital signs, monitoring the progress of patients and reporting any adverse reactions. RN’s not only gather data, they incorporate the data in a more holistic approach for better patient care (Melrose &Wishart, 2013). Considering their educational background, RPN’s have been trained to care for stable patients, where there may not be medical interventions required. The autonomy of an RPN will depend on the complexity of their patient’s condition (RPNAO, 2012). The RPNAO explains that when the care of a patient becomes more complex, there is a greater need for RN’s. This information would imply that RN’s have further educational training that allows them to care for patients with greater needs.
On the other hand, one would argue that the nursing knowledge of an RPN is comparable with the educational knowledge of an RN and for this reason they should be regulated under the same body. Along with RN’s; following graduation, RPN’s take a national certificate examination that will allow them to obtain their license to practice. RPN’s also study from the same body of knowledge as RN’s and have a more focused foundational knowledge. In addition, over the past 10 years, it is evident that the RPN program has started to lengthen and their scope of practice has become broader and comparable with RN’s (RPNAO, 2012). Martin and Weeres (2012) suggest that RPN’s are not working to their full scope of practice and are unable to utilize their ...Show more