Nurses of the Week: Surgical Mission to Ecuador Becomes Once in a Lifetime Opportunity for Columbia CRNA Students

Nurses of the Week: Surgical Mission to Ecuador Becomes Once in a Lifetime Opportunity for Columbia CRNA Students

In honor of CRNA Week, our Nurses of the Week are two Columbia University nursing students who traveled to Ecuador on a surgical mission. Julian Piazzola and William Scott, both members of the Columbia Nursing Class of 2018, jumped at the opportunity to assist a surgical mission in Ecuador. As Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) students, it was the perfect opportunity to participate in a clinical rotation while also getting to travel abroad.

The students were accompanied by Michael Greco, DNP, director of Columbia’s Nurse Anesthesia Program, on the week-long health mission with Blanca’s House to bring quality medical care to countries and communities in Latin America. Their clinical experience in Ecuador included setting up an operating room to provide anesthesia for total knee replacements and head and neck cases for local citizens.

Although the clinical hours they completed in Ecuador did not count toward their hour requirements for official CRNA licensing, Piazzola and Scott say their medical mission was an invaluable opportunity to volunteer their services to patients in need. Piazzola tells Nursing.Columbia.edu:

“Providing care in a remote location was extremely rewarding. I felt the impact we made on this community, and I left with such a positive feeling about the patient experience, which is integral to nursing care.”

To read Columbia Nursing’s full interview with Piazzola and Scott about their experiences volunteering on a surgical mission to Ecuador, visit here.

New York Becomes First State to Require Nurses to Obtain Bachelor’s Degrees

New York Becomes First State to Require Nurses to Obtain Bachelor’s Degrees

The Empire State recently became the first state in the nation to require nurses to obtain a bachelor’s degree in nursing (BSN). Signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo at the beginning of January, the bill requires that new nurses obtain a bachelor’s degree within 10 years of initial licensure. This type of legislation, commonly known as “BSN in 10,” has been pushed across the nation, but New York is the first state to actually pass a law.

The legislation takes effect immediately but the requirement that nurses obtain a baccalaureate degree or higher within 10 years of licensure will begin in 30 months. It does not affect nurses already in practice.

The drive for “BSN in 10” legislation has been largely fueled by research. Linda H. Aiken, PhD, FAAN, FRCN, of the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing has published research showing that employing more nurses with bachelor’s degrees improves patient outcomes. Her research has also found that for each 10% increase in nurses with BSN degrees, there was a 5% decline in risk-adjusted patient mortality.

The Institute of Medicine has also been a large driver for this type of nursing legislation following their 2010 report, The Future of Nursing, which recommends that 80% of nurses have at least a BSN by 2020. New York nursing programs have been in support as well, including Eileen Sullivan-Marx, PhD, RN, FAAN, dean of New York University’s Rory Meyers College of Nursing. According to HealthLeadersMedia.com, Sullivan-Marx released the following statement:

“NYU has been a strong supporter of ‘BSN in 10’ legislation, given its implication for improving patient care. Research shows that patients benefit from baccalaureate-prepared nurses—in fact, several large studies show that it saves lives. Earning bachelor’s degrees also creates opportunities for career mobility and leadership among nurses.”

The bill also establishes a commission to evaluate and report on barriers to entry into the nursing profession and make recommendations on increasing availability and accessibility of nursing programs. As the first state to set “BSN in 10” legislation, New York will set an example going forward on how this type of legislation can improve patient outcomes. To learn more about New York’s “BSN in 10” law, visit here.

Mount Sinai Beth Israel Receives Nursing Workforce Diversity Grant

Mount Sinai Beth Israel Receives Nursing Workforce Diversity Grant

The Philips School of Nursing (PSON) at Mount Sinai Beth Israel recently received a Nursing Workforce Diversity grant of $800,000 from the US Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). The four-year HRSA grant is intended to help increase access to nursing education for students from diverse backgrounds.

PSON’s new grant will support its Workforce Inclusion in Nursing (WIN) program to increase enrollment, retention, and graduation of individuals from diverse backgrounds in the Accelerated Associate of Applied Science program. WIN is the only accelerated associate nursing degree program in the country. Students will receive scholarships and monthly stipends, and the grant will help create new student services including an immersive Summer Boot Camp and mentoring program.

Carleen Graham, MSN, RN, NY-SAFE, Program Coordinator, will serve as program director for WIN, which will follow 21 students from entry to graduation throughout the grant period. She tells Newswise.com:

“It is an honor to be given such an amazing opportunity and responsibility. It is not only important to our school; it is important to our future nurses and the communities they will serve. This grant will help to address the shortage of nurses from underrepresented groups in New York City – considered to be one of the most diverse cities in the country. We are extremely excited to begin work on this important initiative”

Graduates of the fifteen-month WIN program will be eligible for Registered Nurse license examination upon graduation and will be offered direct entry into PSON’s accelerated program allowing registered nurses to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing. Graduates of the WIN program will also receive assistance in securing employment as a registered nurse.

To learn more about Mount Sinai Beth Israel’s Philips School of Nursing workforce diversity grant, visit here.

Nurse of the Week: Marie Carmel Garcon Named Nurse Practitioner of the Year by Nurse Practitioner Association New York State

Nurse of the Week: Marie Carmel Garcon Named Nurse Practitioner of the Year by Nurse Practitioner Association New York State

Our Nurse of the Week is Marie Carmel Garcon, DNP, Columbia University School of Nursing, who has been named the 2017 Nurse Practitioner of the Year by the Nurse Practitioner Association New York State (NPA). Dr. Garcon’s award aligns with National Nurse Practitioner Week 2017, taking place November 12-18.

Garcon leads the House Calls services at ColumbiaDoctors Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Group, the faculty practice of Columbia Nursing, where she provides primary care directly to Washington Heights and Inwood residents who have difficulty leaving their homes. This involves overseeing patients’ care the same way she would in a clinical setting, setting up specialty visits like X-rays and blood work in patients’ homes, and managing their overall care.

The NPA is recognizing Garcon for her outstanding commitment to providing compassionate care after serving the Columbia University Medical Center community for more than 28 years. An NPA release states:

“Dr. Garcon has extensive experience working on the front lines of intensive care and oncology units and is able to advocate for patients and their families giving voice to those who cannot speak for themselves due to illness. Among her many noteworthy accomplishments over her 20-year career as a family nurse practitioner, Dr. Garcon established a support group for patients and families affected by pancreatic cancer.”

The NPA has been recognizing a Nurse Practitioner of the Year since 1987. Garcon was presented with her award at the NPA’s 33rd Annual Conference on October 21 in Saratoga Springs, NY. To learn more about Dr. Garcon and the NPA, visit here.

Nurse Practitioner Association New York State Cites Study on Expanding Role of NPs in Providing Care

Nurse Practitioner Association New York State Cites Study on Expanding Role of NPs in Providing Care

The Nurse Practitioner Association New York State (NPA) recently cited a new study outlining the increasing number and influence of nurse practitioners in the state in celebration of National Nurse Practitioner Week 2017, November 12-18.

Stephen Ferrara, DNP, FNP, FAANP, Associate Dean of Clinical Affairs at Columbia School of Nursing and Executive Director of The NPA, stated in a press release, “Nurse Practitioners focus not only on diagnosing and managing acute and chronic illnesses, but also on integrating evidence based practice, health promotion, disease prevention, and patient education to help patients understand their complete health picture. We thank SUNY Albany’s School of Public Health for their study highlighting the professional credentials and expanding role of NPs as vital providers of health care to people throughout New York State.”

The study, titled “A Profile of New York State Nurse Practitioners, 2017,” was conducted by the Center for Health Workforce Studies at SUNY Albany’s School of Public Health. Key elements of the study included:

  • Approximately 13,000 active NPs are practicing in New York State
  • More than 90% of active NPs report holding a master’s degree or post-master’s certificate as their highest NP degree
  • The vast majority of NPs report a certification in a primary care specialty; nine percent of NPs report a certification in psychiatry
  • Just over half of NPs work in health centers, clinics, and hospital outpatient departments, while another 18% work in physician offices
  • More NPs per 100,000 population work in urban areas than in rural areas of the state
  • NPs in rural areas are more likely to provide primary care or psychiatric services than their urban counterparts
  • Forty-three percent of NPs in the state work in federally designated primary care health professional shortage areas (HPSAs)
  • Nearly 70% of NPs in rural areas work in primary care HPSAs, compared with 39% of NPs in urban areas

According to NPA, there are approximately 234,000 nurse practitioners in the United States, with an additional 23,000 NP students graduating each year. National Nurse Practitioner Week is intended to emphasize the importance of removing outdated barriers to practice so that NPs will be allowed to practice to to the full extent of their experience and education.

To learn more about National Nurse Practitioner Week and Nurse Practitioner Association New York State, visit here.

Nurse Practitioner Association New York State Awards Nurse Practitioner of the Year

Nurse Practitioner Association New York State Awards Nurse Practitioner of the Year

As National Nurse Practitioner Week 2017 approaches (November 12-18), the Nurse Practitioner Association New York State (NPA) has named a new Nurse Practitioner of the Year and Nurse Practitioner Student of the Year. The awards were presented on Oct. 21 at NPA’s 33rd Annual Conference.

Marie Carmel Garcon, DNP, FNP-C, of Columbia University School of Nursing/ColumbiaDoctors Nurse Practitioner Group has been named Nurse Practitioner of the Year for her extensive experience working on the front lines of intensive care and oncology units. With a 20-year career as a family nurse practitioner, Garcon has been an advocate for patients and their families, giving a voice to who those who are unable to speak for themselves due to an illness.

Darcie Morgan, BSN, RN, CPN, who is enrolled in the Masters NP Program at the University of Rochester, has been named Nurse Practitioner Student of the Year. Morgan was recognized for being a role model to other nurse practitioner students and for her commitment to the community. Morgan is especially interested in the promotion of vaccines for all children. Her interest began while working as a school nurse where she noticed that primary care providers do not always promote universal vaccination. Now she is active in dispelling myths about vaccine risks.

Stephen Ferrara, DNP, FNP, FAANP, Associate Dean of Clinical Affairs at Columbia University School of Nursing and Executive Director of the NPA stated in a press release, “As National Nurse Practitioner Week 2017 approaches, what better time is there to acknowledge and celebrate the Nurse Practitioner commitment to evidence based, compassionate, and high-quality care for all patients.”

NPA promotes high standards of healthcare delivery through the empowerment of Nurse Practitioners and the profession throughout New York State. To learn more about this year’s Nurse Practitioner of the Year and Nurse Practitioner Student of the Year, visit here.

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