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Filling the Gaps in PeriOp

To better prepare the nurses of today for the challenges of the nursing field of tomorrow and to ensure there are no workforce shortages, certain steps must be taken.

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Chamberlain University has developed and implemented their Practice Ready. Specialty Focused.™ Nurse Education Model which introduces students to specialty areas of nursing and utilizes their interest to expose students to specialty areas that will lead to a reduction in staff shortages.

During a site visit to the Chamberlain campus in Atlanta, Georgia in August 2023, members of the Reimagining Nursing Initiative team saw firsthand the work that Chamberlain is doing to better prepare future nurses for the workforce in a specialty area that needs additions to the workforce. Chamberlain University addressed one of the largest workforce issues by starting a perioperative Practice Ready. Specialty Focused™ nurse education course. The results were exceptional. More than 365 people signed up to take the course and more than 340 people completed the course. Of those 340, 195 students were placed in a perioperative program as a result of the course completion.

In Atlanta, Chamberlain has partnered with Emory Health Care to provide a clinical host site and a preceptor program to assist in the transition from student education to clinical experience. This partnership has worked well. Emory Health Care is seeing students from Chamberlain are better prepared in their chosen specialties. The inclusion of the specialty program not only decreases the amount of orientation needed to get the nurse graduates in the Operating Room (OR) but helps to staff the OR more quickly. Chamberlain has assessed the participating students’ NCLEX scores. Test scores were higher on average for those individuals participating in the Practice Ready. Specialty Focused.™ program than for the students who did not participate. In the perioperative specialty program, more than 79% of the students passed the program coursework and of those who completed the course and were exposed to nursing in the OR, 12% were hired directly into perioperative care.

As Chamberlain expands into new subspecialties, the experience and model implemented with perioperative nursing is going to be applied to critical care, obstetrics, nephrology, and pediatrics starting in January 2024. All these specialties have workforce gaps in relation to the number of nurses working in the specialty and the hope is that these gaps will be filled with Chamberlain graduates from across the country.

Being able to provide quality education has tremendous benefits to students, employers, and nursing as a whole. The work that Chamberlain University is conducting with their Practice Ready. Specialty Focused.™ Nurse Education Model demonstrates that better preparing students by exposing them to areas in need of nurses, is an effective solution to mitigate the existing workforce shortage.

Stay up to date on the progress of Chamberlain University's Practice Ready. Specialty Focused™ Nurse Education Model and all the innovations of the Reimagining Nursing Initiative. Sign up for updates here!



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