SALISBURY, MD---By 2016, the Maryland Hospital Association (MHA) predicts the state will be short more than 10,000 registered nurses. With the organization’s help, Salisbury University is working to address this need.
The SU Nursing Department was recently awarded $937,035 from MHA’s Who Will Care? Fund for Nurse Education. The three-year, three-prong grant is designed to increase the number of SU graduates who earn a B.S. in Nursing.
The department’s first initiative is to create a state-of-the-art simulation center with a mock labor and delivery suite, nursery, and pediatric emergency room. High-fidelity, computerized, life-like mannequins will replicate demanding, unpredictable clinical situations, including labor and delivery, and allow nursing students to make decisions to care for critically ill newborns and children. Video equipment will permit students to review and critique their interactions and decisions in the safety of a simulated encounter to prepare for real-life nursing situations.
The grant also will provide for the training of “standardized patients,” or student actors who follow scripts written by SU faculty to depict behaviors associated with common psychiatric disorders. The simulation center will feature a mock clinic setting where students can interact with these “patients.” Such learning will prepare more sensitive and effective nurses.
Finally, the grant will allow SU to develop a best practices in nursing course. Offered beginning fall 2010, it will help students connect classroom knowledge with clinical problem solving.
“This is tremendous news,” said Dr. Karen Olmstead, dean of the Henson School of Science and Technology. “The simulation center and related projects will be outstanding resources for all of our nursing students. This is the third major grant recently funded for the department and I commend all involved for their leadership in working to address Maryland’s nursing shortage.”
“Together these new endeavors will support modest expansion of enrollments in our second degree program, improve retention in both of our undergraduate nursing tracks, as well as create a state-of-the art facility to improve clinical thinking and decision making for all nursing students,” said Dr. Lisa Seldomridge, department chair.
For two consecutive years, SU nursing students have had the highest pass rate of all baccalaureate programs in Maryland on the National Council Licensure Examination.
For more information call 410-543-6030 or visit the SU Department of Nursing Web site at www.salisbury.edu/nursing.