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Saint Mary’s receives federal funding for graduate nurse education



RN Transition to Practice Program seeks to improve retention rates among new grads

Healthcare jobs in northern Nevada are on the rise and the need for qualified nurses continues to be an economic driver for the region. In an effort to promote job growth and retention of qualified nurses, Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center will begin a program for new nursing school graduates. The Registered Nurse Transition to Practice Program (TPP) was developed through a federal grant that supports nurse education, practice and retention.

“We are very excited to receive this grant and already know how impactful this will be for our community. Providing new graduates with a transition program will greatly enhance their first year as practicing nurses,” said Jami-Sue Coleman, TPP program director at Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center. “The program encourages one-on-one mentoring and will assist new nurses with building greater knowledge in specialty areas. Our goal is to improve healthcare delivery by maintaining qualified registered nurses.”

Nevada is listed as one of the fastest-growing states in the U.S., yet the ratio of nurses-to-population ratio among the lowest in the nation. Additionally, graduate nurses who transition to professional practice after a traditional eight-week orientation often experience stress and reality shock at the demands of their new job. To address these issues, Saint Mary’s developed the TPP nursing program which will support new nurse graduates in their transition to clinical practice as well as develop and retain experienced nurses that can drive the region’s workforce, ensuring quality care for all patients.

Through the year-long TPP nursing program, new nurse graduates will receive rigorous training and mentoring that better prepares them for their career as a clinical nurse. In order to maintain high educational standards throughout the region, Saint Mary’s has partnered with Truckee Meadows Community College (TMCC) to develop a curriculum for the 86 nurses the program will recruit over three years.

The program is modeled after the National Council of State Boards of Nursing Transition to Practice guidelines and will facilitate focused education to learn and master clinical skills while developing the ability to prioritize and manage time in a supportive environment. This will help lower stress levels, improve retention rates and increase clinical competency.

“It’s important to have a skilled workforce that can adapt to its work environment, which is one of the main drivers of this program,” said Coleman. “During the year-long program, nurse graduates will participate in educational modules that teach them how to be successful caregivers to a diverse range of patients.”

Eligible candidates for the program include recent graduates from an accredited nursing program, including Orvis School of Nursing, Western Nevada College, TMCC and Carrington College. Applications will be accepted starting Tuesday, Nov. 1. For more information and to apply, contact the Saint Mary’s Human Resources department at 775-770-6258 or visit www.saintmarysreno.org/Patients_And_Visitors/220347.

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About Saint Mary’s

Saint Mary’s Network is a fully-integrated, faith-based health system in Reno, Nev. founded in 1908 by the Dominican Sisters of San Rafael.  The network is comprised of Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center, an acute-care hospital, providing inpatient, outpatient and wellness services; Saint Mary’s Health Plans, a statewide insurance provider with more than 40,000 members; and Saint Mary’s Medical Group, a network of physicians and other health professionals offering primary and urgent care, retail clinics and specialty healthcare.  A member of Catholic Healthcare West, Saint Mary’s is dedicated to meeting the healthcare needs of our community. For more information, visit our website at www.saintmarysreno.org.

About Catholic Healthcare West

Catholic Healthcare West (CHW), headquartered in San Francisco, CA, is a system of 40 hospitals and medical centers in California, Arizona, and Nevada. Founded in 1986, it is one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit health care systems and the largest private hospital system in California. CHW is committed to delivering compassionate, high-quality, affordable health care services with special attention to the poor and underserved. The CHW network of nearly 10,000 physicians and approximately 54,000 employees provides health care services to more than five million people annually. In 2010, CHW provided more than $1.3 billion in charity care, community benefit, and unreimbursed patient care. For more information, please visit our website at www.chwHEALTH.org.

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