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Professional Nursing Associations and Societies

As with most professions it can be extremely beneficial for a Registered Nurse to become part of a formal professional association. There are two main nursing associations The American Nurses Association (ANA) and the American Society of Registered Nurses (ASRN). The former is for all levels of nursing whereas the American Society of Registered Nurses (ASRN) is strictly for Registered Nurses. There is a variety of benefits that one can gain from being a part of a professional association. From making professional contacts to aid with job mobility, to staying up to date on state of the art nursing practices, being associated with a nursing society can help you to develop your nursing skills and increase your career potential.

The American Nurses Association (ANA) is an extremely old organization having been founded at the tail end of the 19th century. It has gone through a number of name changes over the years, but its organizing principle has been the same; to expand the practice of nursing while creating a set of professional standards and ethics for all nurses to adhere to. The ANA’s Code of Ethics is commonly accepted as the de facto code of ethics for all of nursing. A broad organization that includes all of nursing, the ANA works to also help in the ongoing professional development of all nurses to help nursing and healthcare standards maintain a certain level of excellence throughout the country. The ANA also works to expand and protect the rights of nurses in the workplace and push for their economic and overall well-being within the healthcare system. The ANA is also one of the primary bodies offering credentials for the nursing profession.

The American Society of Registered Nurses (ASRN) was created in the first part of the 21st century to help bring together registered nurses of all stripes under one organization to expand the study and practice of nursing. They also offer additional professional resources, education and notoriety to their members. ASRN’s goal is to advance nursing as a profession through providing its members with a forum for discussing the discipline as well as expanding its scope and practice through access to unique resources. The ASRN also has activism as part of its platform within the public policy sphere on a variety of issues such as: Healthcare as a human right, global and national health initiatives and reforms, student debt relief for nurses as well as other political issues related to nursing and healthcare.

Professional organizations are very important to the continued expansion of the nursing profession and help all of their members to have access to cutting edge best practices as well as other tools and resources to aid in professional development. Being a member of a professional nursing organization can be helpful to one’s career in a variety of ways. These organizations can also help one by developing your professional contacts within the nursing field. In addition to professional development, you also gain the macro benefit of helping to support an organization that is working to help all nurses and to increase the quality of healthcare throughout the entire country.