The nursing field offers huge career opportunities. But with a critical nursing shortage and new complexities for those entering the profession, how can we ensure the next generation of nurses can handle whatever might come their way? What does it take to successfully transition them from classroom into practice? These are some of the questions addressed in the December issue of PATIENT SAFETY.
“We need to prepare our nurses to learn in a new way and adapt how they make decisions, even at the bedside,” says Cedar Crest College senior instructor Eileen Fruchtl, MSN. She explores issues such as simulation technology, testing for decision making, core curricula and the expanding roles of nurses in the article, Onward and Upward: The Future of Nursing Education. “Most people don’t see the complexity of what a nurse does at the bedside, what they have to have in their knowledge base to keep patients safe,” she says.
“The core curriculum integrates things that didn’t even exist years ago—like informatics. We see a lot more in politics and advocacy, leadership and management, and communities.”
Fruchtl explains that nurses drive the healthcare system through their work in policy making, insurance, education, and in the community. “A lot of students don’t realize the extent of the opportunities they’ll have.”
Transitioning students from academia into safe practice is the subject of another article based on a study conducted by faculty at Commonwealth University, Bloomsburg Campus, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee College of Nursing and Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Their research revealed new nurses’ challenges including lack of skill dexterity, absence of mentors, and imposter syndrome. Enhancing academic curriculum, cooperative efforts between practice nurses and faculty, and improving nurse residency programs can narrow the academic practice gap, the authors conclude.
Other topics in this issue of PATIENT SAFETY include:
How a peer support program improves care for all – Jefferson Health’s RISE program is a psychological first-aid, peer-support team for distressed healthcare workers and providers in the immediate wake of a stressful or traumatic workplace event. Jefferson’s program leads, John Olsen and Dr. Scott Cowan, explain the program’s genesis, its positive impact, and how it can be replicated in other institutions.
An inside look to healthcare in prison – Erica Benning, Bureau of Healthcare director for the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (PA DOC), discusses healthcare delivery for almost 40,000 incarcerated individuals: what can be done in-house, how her team handles inmates with mental illness, their COVID response, and more.
PATIENT SAFETY is the peer-reviewed journal of the Patient Safety Authority. A scientific publication, PATIENT SAFETY humanizes patient harm with stories, opinion pieces, and magazine-quality design. It has a readership of more than 45,000 people in 164 countries.
Established under the Medical Care Availability and Reduction of Error (MCARE) Act of 2002, the PSA, an independent state agency, collects and analyzes patient safety data to improve safety outcomes and help prevent patient harm. http://patientsafety.pa.gov/