Lifelong Learning and IOM Recommendations in Nursing


In this day and age, the role of a nurse in healthcare is becoming more complex and diverse. Due to science making rapid advances and the need to translate knowledge into practice, lifelong learning is no longer arbitrary for health practitioners. In response to the pressing issues within the United States healthcare system, in 2010, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) published recommendations on the future of nursing.

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One of the primary objectives set by IOM was increasing the level of education among health practitioners, and namely, ensuring that the share of nurses with a bachelor degree amounts to 80% by 2020 (Institute of Medicine of National Academies, 2010). Among other goals is an increase in the number of nurses with a doctorate and promotion of continuing education. In this essay, I will discuss my impact on the prospects of the nursing profession.

My Role in Following IOM Recommendations

I believe that my personal plans pertaining to my professional growth are compliant with the guidelines provided by the Institute of Medicine. So far, studying medicine has been a great inspiration for me, and since it is an expanding and ever-changing field, I see continuing my education further as nothing but an absolute necessity (Kroning, 2016). Thus, in case I reach my objectives, I will contribute to the attainment of all three goals outlined by IOM – the pursuit of baccalaureate and doctorate degrees in a continuous learning process.

As of now, there is no shortage of options in the job market for me, especially given the growing need for more nurses in the United States workforce. However, I would prefer to improve my chances and have more freedom of choice by gaining additional qualifications.

My Role in the Future of Nursing

If I continue my education as a nurse, I will gain access to more narrow specializations and specific fields of practice. Being a practitioner with a rare set of skills has its advantages and disadvantages: without doubts, my expertise is going to be on demand, but there might be not enough job openings to choose from. I am interested in examining interdisciplinary fields, for instance, nurse scientist or nurse attorney, even though I might need a second degree for the latter. Such specializations as pediatric registered nurse or labor and delivery nurse also drew my interest.

My level of education is likely to make me an excellent nurse leader and health promoter. Perseverance and multitasking that I will develop in the learning process will help me enhance my managing skills. In the future, I might entertain the option of being an instructor guiding new coming staff, and as an accomplished person, I will set a positive example for students and younger employees.


Since I started nursing school, I have realized that this profession means that one’s knowledge is never enough or complete. What we are learning now might become obsolete in a matter of a few years which leads me to the main point of this paper – the importance of lifelong learning. I am glad that the issue of continuing education is recognized on the national level by such bodies as the Institute of Medicine and National Academies. The goals that the IOM set for the years to come are reasonable; however, the viability of the plan depends on the individual effort. I will be glad to perpetuate a great cause by making progress in academia and developing leadership qualities.

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Institute of Medicine of National Academies. (2010). The future of nursing. Leading change, advancing health. Report recommendations. Web.

Kroning, M. (2016). Lifelong learning in nursing. Journal of Christian Nursing: A Quarterly Publication of Nurses Christian Fellowship, 33(1), p. 255.

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StudyCorgi. 2021. "Lifelong Learning and IOM Recommendations in Nursing." July 16, 2021.


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