183979 South Carolina student nurses: Making a difference in the health care community

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Patrick Hickey, RN, MSN, DRPH , College of Nursing, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
Judith Alexander, PhD, RN, APRN , College of Nursing, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
Jane Weilert, EdD, RN , College of Nursing, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
The future will almost certainly require professional nurses who can easily move back and forth between the hospital and the community. Although some hospitals maintain home visiting services, a smooth transition between hospital and home will be better served by nurses who are familiar with the patient, the treatment plan, and the technology being used, at least during the initial period after release.

The need for nurses and other health professionals to move some of their emphasis to the community has been evident for some time. As a result, curriculum efforts in the University of South Carolina, College of Nursing have been aimed at increasing community skills in graduates. Many modifications have been made in requirements, sequencing, and emphasis to accommodate changes in health care, trends in nursing education, and variations in student numbers and backgrounds. An ultimate goal was to make certain that the richness of community experiences prepared the students for the community health care setting. Existing courses that provided community experiences were evaluated as well were the clinical sites themselves.

A variety of initiatives now exist such as an expansion of the baccalaureate program into rural areas in eleven county areas, undergraduate community health students opportunities to work with retired police officers in making home visits to community residents, integration of community health experiences into existing clinical courses, provision of health services to underserved clients in three primary care health centers maintained by the College of Nursing, and utilization of new community partnerships which enhance student experiences.

Learning Objectives:
1. Learners will recognize a variety of curriculum changes employed by schools of nursing to introduce community health to students. 2. Learners will identify opportunities to provide clinical site practicums for schools of nursing seeking student experiences

Keywords: Students, Nursing Education

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Community Health Program Coordinator for University of South Carolina College of Nursing
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

See more of: PHN Poster Session-III
See more of: Public Health Nursing