Arizona State University (ASU) and Eastern Arizona College (EAC) have partnered to create a concurrent enrollment program that allows students to earn their bachelor’s degree from ASU while studying at EAC’s campus in Thatcher, Arizona.
The partnership between EAC and ASU, called the EAC-ASU Baccalaureate Nursing Program, allows students to take class for both their associate and bachelor’s degrees at the same time. It is a quicker, cheaper, and more flexible option than other traditional nursing education tracks, offering hybrid courses that allow students to do their work online at their own pace but ask professors questions in person.
Program director Carolyn McCormies tells ASUNow.ASU.edu, “Research shows that patient outcomes are better when nurses have a higher level of education, but many nurses with associate degrees find it very difficult to go back to school once they start working or have families. Our graduates have the opportunity to earn a bachelor’s degree along with their associate. The whole community benefits from having a program like this in their midst.”
A main goal of the program is to ensure that skilled healthcare professionals and quality care aren’t lost to bigger cities. ASU and EAC aim to keep graduates of the program in rural areas. Each semester, students in the program are required to complete 10 hours of community service as well as four hours of “leadership time” mentoring underclassmen.
To learn more about Arizona State University’s partnership with Eastern Arizona College to encourage nurses to work in rural areas, visit here.
Florida International University’s (FIU) Nicole Wertheim College of Nursing & Health Sciences has awarded $100,000 in traineeship grants to five FIU nurse practitioner graduate students to participate in the pilot of the Advanced Nursing Education Workforce (ANEW) program.
ANEW is a two-year nursing education initiative funded by the US Human Resources & Services Administration to prepare advanced practice nurses to provide primary care in rural and underserved areas.
Tami Thomas, associate dean of research for the college and ANEW grant project director, tells News.FIU.edu, “Many of today’s 60 million rural Americans are uninsured, at risk for increased health risk behaviors, and live in poverty at even higher levels than what we see in our big cities. ANEW addresses this inequity by familiarizing nurse practitioners with the challenges and opportunities of working in rural health care settings and preparing them to work to the fullest scope of their abilities.”
The health departments of Glades and Hendry counties will be providing five clinical sites and onsite instructional supervisors to guide the trainees during their training program. FIU nursing faculty will also supplement the training by using telehealth systems to help ANEW trainees deliver care at the clinics.
The first cohort of ANEW trainees are all graduate nursing students from FIU’s Family Nurse Practitioner track. Each trainee will receive up to $20,000 to help cover tuition, living and housing expenses, and textbooks. Their clinical rotation begins in summer 2018.
To learn more about FIU’s rural primary care nursing apprenticeship program and the first cohort of trainees, visit here.
Florida A&M University (FAMU) will be placing new focus on preparing nursing students to serve in rural and underserved communities thanks to a $1.3 million grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).
The project, called the Academic-Practice Partnerships Enhance Advanced Learning (APPEAL), is intended to advance the health and life success of Florida communities through the diversification of health professions. Students in the FAMU School of Nursing will work in partner primary care clinical practice sites in medically underserved and rural communities to help increase the number of Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) working in those areas.
Henry C. Talley, PhD, dean of the School of Nursing and principal investigator for the grant, tells FAMUNews.com, “The HRSA grant and our new APPEAL project position us to not only train the next generation of nursing professionals on how to serve rural and underserved communities but also allows us to help eliminate health care disparities for families and individuals who deserve the best care available despite their financial status or location.”
APRNs are trained to serve as direct patient care providers in the state of Florida and can offer services including preventing, diagnosing, and treating illnesses. Through new partnerships, the APPEAL project will provide hands-on training for advanced practice nursing students, preparing them for successful entry to community-based, primary care settings in rural and underserved areas.
To learn more about FAMU’s APPEAL project and new nursing grant, visit here.
The University of Michigan-Flint (UM-Flint) recently received a $1.2 million Advanced Nursing Education Workforce grant to help prepare nurse practitioners to care for patients in underserved and rural areas. The grant will also help the School of Nursing develop and evaluate partnerships with rural medical clinics and centers.
Over the next two years, 30 nurse practitioner students will be selected to take part in the grant and receive specialized education on how to care for rural populations. The financial support provided by the grant will allow these students to complete clinical placements in rural areas of Michigan and increase the pipeline of health care providers for these populations.
Margaret Andrews, Interim Dean of the School of Nursing, tells News.UMFlint.edu, “Nurse practitioners serving rural communities provide many preventative services, detect and treat illnesses, increase life expectancy of rural residents, and improve the overall health and quality of life for rural communities. UM-Flint is pleased to partner with existing physicians and nurse practitioner practices in Michigan’s rural areas to educate and train the next generation of nurse practitioners to serve the needs of rural communities in Michigan.”
To learn more about UM-Flint’s Advanced Nursing Education Workforce grant and efforts to increase the number of nurse practitioners trained to serve in rural areas, visit here.
The Louisiana State University (LSU) Health New Orleans School of Nursing was recently awarded a $1.4 million federal grant to help prepare primary care advanced practice registered nurses to practice in rural and underserved areas.
The grant was awarded by the Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) Advanced Nursing Education Workforce (ANEW) program and will be distributed over the course of two years. Funding is expected to target clinical training in the school’s primary care family and adult gerontology primary care nurse practitioner programs.
Twenty-five students will receive trainee awards ranging from $1,500 to $8,000 per academic year. Eligible students who are enrolled full-time will receive direct aid to help with tuition, books, and living expenses. The program will also help support academic-practice partnerships for students, including a partnership with University Medical Center New Orleans Ambulatory Clinics for students working in underserved areas of the state.
To learn more about LSU’s nursing programs and available grants for students serving in rural areas, visit here.
Consider your last visit to a doctor’s office or emergency room. Whether it was delivering your second baby, getting your father’s blood pressure checked, or removing a fish hook from your son’s eye brow as a result of a scout camp blunder, chances are a nurse helped you better cope with the experience. It’s what we do, and it’s part of what attracts new students to this profession every year.
All nursing fields are in need of smart, caring, dedicated people, but one field, in high demand but often overlooked, is public health. While more community-based rather than focused on individual care, the public health realm is ideal for nurses who enjoy designing cause-driven contributions in health care services within communities. It’s not glamorous, but the work is incredibly gratifying.
If you love the idea of working in the health care profession, but find yourself leaning toward the research, social cause side of health, here are four reasons why being a public health nurse is a great career choice.
1. Provide help where it is most needed.
As of 2014, 15% of the country’s population lives in rural areas, and many of these communities lack proper health care resources. Studies show that the per capita rate of primary care physicians is lower in rural areas of the country with 40 physicians per 100,000 rural Americans compared to the 53.3 physicians available in urban and suburban areas.
However, the need for services in these areas is much higher. Rural residents are more likely to suffer from chronic health conditions like diabetes, cancer, heart disease, depression, drug abuse, and viral outbreaks. Also, these communities need education on social and lifestyle changes that can influence drug abuse, child neglect, and self-sufficiency challenges.
2. Create positive inroads within local communities.
Whether it’s addressing high rates of drug addiction, unplanned pregnancy, hunger, or even suicide, it’s moments like these that remind us why we chose this profession in the first place. Being a public health nurse fosters our desire to help people and make a positive impact. “The community-based interventions used by public health nurses have amazing reach and impact,” says Marni Storey, BSN, MS. “Almost every strategy has potential to improve multiple health outcomes.”
Storey referred to campaigns such as improving prenatal care or reducing child abuse and neglect as examples of the positive influence a public health nurse generates. For example, by building awareness and providing resources to address these challenges, you are also increasing the likelihood of the parents’ economic success, the child’s success in school and future employment, and reducing future risks for depression, substance abuse, and chronic conditions like obesity and heart disease.
3. Take part in progressive research.
Not all nursing roles are seen by the public. In many cases, a nurse’s greatest influence happens behind the scenes, particularly in matters of research. In this field, you are developing an understanding of an entire community to uncover solutions to social challenges.
“Using epidemiology and research, we are developing and testing interventions that address social determinants of health,” says Storey. “Prevention at this level means addressing problems by asking ourselves what is the root cause of the problem, and how can we prevent it.” Unlike other nursing fields where patients come and go, a public health nurse witnesses transformation within communities on a regular basis. And that is extremely gratifying.
4. Be part of the movement toward health education and prevention.
When the Zika virus outbreak made national news, most people figured it was an issue limited to other countries. But, in fact, there was 36,986 symptomatic Zika virus disease cases reported in the U.S. territories. While doctors find solutions to control further outbreaks of Zika and other global threats to our health, it’s up to the public health sector to build awareness of the risks and educate communities on preventative measures.
Many believe that the trend in health care will shift from illness treatment to health education and prevention. According to Nurse Journal, “the profession is going to start to play an even bigger role in ensuring that the well stay well and the sick get better.” That means the role of a public health nurse will expand to accommodate these exciting new ventures, particularly in the rural communities.
So, you may not see a public health nurse star in a dramatic TV series anytime soon, but the positive work carried out by public health is transforming the lives of communities every day. And that performance is worthy of a lifetime achievement award — minus the red carpet and paparazzi, of course.