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Curriculum Improvement

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Curriculum Support for Public Health

Population Health Supplement to Baccalaureate Essentials
The Recommended Baccalaureate Competencies and Curricular Guidelines for Public Health Nursing highlights public/population health as critical to improving the nation’s health, emphasizes nursing’s role in addressing this priority, and provides strategies for faculty to integrate related content and experiences into the curriculum.

Curriculum Best Practices

The graduate and undergraduate best practices are online summaries and posting of curricular innovations developed by schools of nursing. These postings and listings of resources serve as a toolkit for introducing population health into the graduate and undergraduate nursing curriculum.

Curriculum Thread
Developed Courses
Service Learning Experience
Grand Valley State University
Undergraduate Program

The Kirkhof College of Nursing at the Grand Valley State University incorporates community concepts across the five semesters of the undergraduate nursing curriculum. The curriculum is concept-based with community/population health incorporated as one of the concept threads included in the curriculum design. The process of defining the exact meaning of “community” within the nursing curriculum was an early challenge since community concepts may be focused on the individual, the family, or the population. Faculty successfully incorporated an approach that begins in the first semester. In the first semester, undergraduate students focus on the individual within the community and are exposed to simulations that prepare them for the community-based care experience. During this semester, they also do home visits, concentrating on home safety assessments and the impact of the home environment on the individual. The primary focus on the individual within a setting continues for the second semester. During the third semester the focus broadens to the family unit and by the 4th and 5th semester, the focus is on population-based health including the social determinants of health in the community. The students are placed in the same public health site for their 4th and 5th semesters in order to support completion of their population health projects. These projects focus on population health and the impact of the environment on the health of the individual. Sites for this experience include health departments, homeless shelters, and community refugee agencies. 

There is a simultaneous clinical focus on acute care in the curriculum. The students learn acute care skills in local hospitals at the same time that they are completing the community clinicals. The faculty have found that students understand transitional care issues clearly. The students are exposed to Mary Naylor’s Transitional Care Model (TCM) during their clinical experiences. Simulations focused on transitional care use chronic disease models such as CHF, COPD, or DM for topics.

Students are generally positive about the community experience and faculty note improvement in the understanding of care transitions and the need for continuity of care. There has also been marked improvement in the HESI community health scores over the last 3 years.

Resources
American Association of Colleges of Nursing. (2008) The Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice. Washington, D.C., AACN.

American Association of College of Nursing. (2013). Public Health: Recommended Competencies and Curricular Guidelines for Public Health Nursing, A Supplement to the Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice. Washington, D.C., AACN.

Naylor MD, Feldman PH, Keating S, et al. Translating research into practice: transitional care for older adults. J Eval Clin Pract. 2009;15(6):1164-70. 

Quad Council of Public Health Nursing Organizations. (2011). Quad Council Competencies for Public Health Nurses. https://www.achne.org/files/quad%20council/quadcouncilcompetenciesforpublichealthnurses.pdf

Contact
S. Harrington, PhD, RN
Grand Valley State University
harrinsu@gvsu.edu

Johns Hopkins University
Graduate Program

MSN/MPH in Public Health Nursing
The joint MSN-PHN/MPH program at the Johns Hopkins University prepares and inspires nurses to effectively deliver public health nursing services. Offered jointly through the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing and the Bloomberg School of Public Health, this degree option teaches advanced mastery of public health nursing theory and practice, with a population-focus and multidisciplinary perspective. It is an 18 month full time study program consisting of three practicums focused on assessment, population based nursing interventions, and evaluation of programs. It is designed for nurses seeking to integrate advanced public health nursing practice with public health perspectives. With the joint degree, students acquire complementary skills, knowledge and perspectives of both disciplines. Two-thirds of the program includes core courses from each master’s program; the remaining elective courses allow students to pursue curriculums customized to their specific interest. Students must complete a total of 36 credits in the School of Nursing courses and 60 didactic units in the School of Public Health. 

MSN/MPH - Nurse Practitioner with a Public Health Nursing Focus
Combines the 16-21 months Master of Science in Nursing-Nurse Practitioner in Primary Care and the 11 month Master of Public Health offered by the respective schools in 26 months of full-time study. The program is designed for nurses seeking to integrate nurse practitioner clinical practice with a population-based public health perspective. The MSN-NP/MPH is designed specifically for nurses seeking to link their clinical interests with public health practice. This combined program prepares nurse practitioners with a focus in community health, and knowledge of population-based public health science and practice. Nurses in advanced practice often return to school at a later time for a degree in public health to make their approach to individual health problems more comprehensive. Obtaining the joint degree at the outset, students acquire the complementary skills, knowledge and perspective of both disciplines. Graduate education in nursing equips students with advanced mastery of nursing theory and practice, while public health training provides a population-based, multi-disciplinary team approach. The programs include core courses from each school‘s master’s program. The remaining courses fulfill each program‘s requirements.Students choose a patient population (pediatrics, adult-geriatric, or family) focus in the nurse practitioner program.

Public Health Nursing /Nurse-Midwifery Certificate
The MSN in Public Health Nursing with Nurse-Midwifery is offered by the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing in collaboration with the Shenandoah University Division of Nursing. Graduates of this program of study complete preparation in Public Health Nursing at JHUSON. This track incorporates concepts from nursing and public health to study the design, delivery and evaluation of nursing services to populations and communities. Practicum experiences are individualized and designed to challenge students to be innovative and work with multidisciplinary teams. These students then complete the didactic and clinical requirements for certification in nurse midwifery including the management of women's health in the antepartal, intrapartal, postpartal periods and care of the newborn during the neonatal period. Full-time or part-time study is available. The portion of the program offered at Shenandoah University is via a distance- learning format. Graduates receive a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) from Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing and a certificate of endorsement in nurse-midwifery from the Shenandoah University Division of Nursing.

Contact
Joan Kub
Johns Hopkins University
jkub1@jhu.edu

Rush University
Graduate Program

Advanced Public Health Nursing (BSN/MSN to DNP) 
Leadership to Enhance Population Health Outcomes (post MSN/APRN to DNP)
The changing demands of the nation’s complex health care environment require that nurses serving in specialty positions have the highest level of scientific knowledge and practice expertise possible. A recent IOM report (2013) called for integrating primary care and public health as a necessary mechanism to improve the health of the public.  To educate nurses at advanced nursing practice levels for these challenges, Rush University College of Nursing has developed two tracks in their DNP program focused on population health and guided by the Quad Council competencies for public health: 

Advanced Public Health Nursing (APHN)
Advanced Public Health Nursing (APHN) practice at Rush is population-based, with interventions directed to the population/community as a whole. The BSN/MSN to DNP APHN curriculum provides education in assessing, planning, and evaluating nursing interventions for individuals, families, and aggregates/populations to prepare specialists in Advanced Public Health Nursing. The program is designed for nurses who want to work at the population level and:

  • Improve existing systems of care
  • Develop new programs to meet the needs of groups of clients or communities
  • Develop evidence-based strategies for health, wellness, and disease prevention
  • Enhance care coordination for vulnerable groups
  • Influence health policy
  • Write grants for needed funding
  • Develop leadership skills to affect change

The APHN program includes content in research for evidence based practice; epidemiology and biostatistics; leadership; health care policy and finance; policy analysis; environmental health; case management; organizational analysis; outcomes management; and population health assessment, planning, intervention development, implementation and evaluation. The student also takes 3 cognate courses in an area of focus in population health. Students participate in over 1000 hours of clinical (post BSN) to provide experience in applying the population health knowledge and skills in a clinical setting, and developing and implementing a population health intervention, based on assessment of needs, strengths and resources.

Enhancing Leadership in Population Health Outcomes (POPLEAD)
Enhancing Leadership in Population Health Outcomes (POPLEAD) expands the role of the Primary Care APRN by providing education focused toward improving clinical population outcomes in complex systems. The program is designed for nurses who want to integrate population health into their practice and:

  • Improve existing systems of care
  • Develop new programs to meet the needs of groups of clients
  • Enhance care coordination for vulnerable groups
  • Influence health policy
  • Develop leadership skills to affect change

POPLEAD is designed to prepare Primary Care APRNs to develop basic knowledge and skills in population health to enhance their primary care practice. These APRNs are prepared to work in teams with others to use population health knowledge and skills in the primary care setting. Courses include: epidemiology and biostatistics; leadership; health care policy and finance; policy analysis; environmental health or case management; and population health assessment, planning, intervention development, implementation and evaluation. Students also participate in 500 hours of clinical (post BSN) to allow them to apply their knowledge in developing and implementing a population health intervention, based on assessment of needs, strengths and resources, for a target population in their primary care worksite.

Students in each track take courses and work together, to further the integration of primary care and population health. Both tracks emphasize health promotion, primary prevention and program management for vulnerable populations.

Contact
Susan M. Swider, PhD, APHN-BC, FAAN
Rush University 
Susan_m_swider@rush.edu

University of Kansas
Undergraduate Program

The University of Kansas has revised their undergraduate curriculum based on the QSEN framework. They have introduced curriculum threads based on focused learning activities (FLAs). One of the population health FLAs focused on quality indicators at the population/systems level. This FLA is completed during the undergraduate population-based health practicum during which students work with various at-risk populations in settings such as urban public schools, community safety net clinics, and homeless shelters. Students are asked to identify population-based program impact indicators to compare with state and national benchmarks from Health People 2020. The focus of this assignment is on program assessment. Students are asked to examine the data used to describe program impact as well as locate benchmarking data at state and national levels for comparison. 

The curriculum innovation has been in place for just over 1 year. Student learning outcomes have not yet been finalized, but will be based on NCLEX performance and on potential qualitative indicators such as the preceptor’s evaluation of the student’s readiness for professional practice. 

A grading rubric for this undergraduate community health nursing activity has been developed and is available.

Contact
Elaine Domian, PhD or Jill Peltzer, PhD
Kansas University Medical Center
jpeltzer2@kumc.edu

Reference
Barton, A.J., Armstrong, G., Preheim, G., Gelmon, S.B., and Andrus, L.C., (2009). A national Delphi to determine developmental progression of quality and safety competencies in nursing education. Nursing Outlook. 57 (6): 313-22.  

University of Medicine and Dentistry of NJ and Rutgers University
Graduate Program

UMDNJ surveyed public health nurses in the state of New Jersey. 75 public health nurses participated in this study. Out of this study the public health MSN program was developed in 2009. Since then, the program has had 16 participants. In the program students are required to take epidemiology and biostatistics in the School of Public Health. Students who are interested in pursuing the Doctor of Nurse Practitioner degree at a later time can transfer these courses. The program incorporates clinical field practice into all courses, so students can built a consistent field experience. The program emphasizes collaboration and leadership as well as emphasis on population based health care. Before the field assignment the student is interviewed on what he/she likes and their interests. The students are then placed in a site that can provide experience with a population of interest and matched with an appropriate field preceptor. Examples of partners involved in this program include community based organizations, local public health departments, and federally qualified health clinics.  For example, in a community-based project students collaborated with outreach workers in conducting home assessments and prenatal follow-ups in the community. Students are expected to choose 1 or 2 course objectives and focus on those during their weekly field practice experience. Each student then develops a product based on the need of the organization, his/her learning interest and the course objectives. The student also has the opportunity to attend events/activities such as Board of Health meetings as part of the clinical experience. An interesting example of impact was provided. A public health nursing student placed in a local public health department found a gap in STI follow-up. The student found the language on the follow up handouts required a high level of reading comprehension. She developed a pocket-sized easy to read card with steps on how to follow-up after an STI appointment. This product has been very successful and is being used in the clinic with the goal to find funding to reproduce and distribute the product to other DOH in the state of New Jersey.

Program evaluation is done jointly by preceptors and faculty with students based on course objectives and completion of a final filed project. Course evaluation rubrics are used and students are expected to develop a weekly journal (begins after 2 weeks) to describe their progress and accomplishments. Faculty use the clinical experiences to build on the required MSN field project. The rubric and journal example are available on request.

Contact
Frances Munet, PhD, MSN
University of Medicine and Dentistry of NJ and Rutgers University
munetvfr@umdnj.edu 

University of North Florida
Undergraduate Program

The undergraduate nursing program at the University of North Florida has a community-based, population focused curriculum that integrates the principles of population health and community engagement throughout the undergraduate nursing program. The program has been in-place for ten years and is based on a community ecology model that encourages holistic thinking about the relationship of health to community development. Students enter the professional nursing component of the undergraduate program in the third year of their university career with prerequisite courses in basic statistics, psychology, sociology and the liberal arts. At the start of their five semester sequence of nursing courses they are introduced to their community home-base, the service-learning site for the duration of their undergraduate nursing program. Placement of students is done with consideration to the student’s home location in order to minimize student travel time. Students are mentored throughout the five semester experience by two faculty members who remain with them for the duration of their service learning experience. The faculty members do not always have a public health nursing background, but do have strong interests in the community or may have an association with a community agency.

At the start of the experience students learn basic public health concepts in an introductory class and begin a community assessment in their community home-base. They are briefly introduced to public health nursing roles, family and community assessment, descriptive epidemiology, environmental health and transcultural nursing. Throughout out the first four semesters, students plan, implement, and evaluate various community projects for at risk populations in cooperation with community stakeholders and faculty mentors. Their relationship with the community moves from development of familiarity with the people and place to a deepening level of engagement and commitment. Their projects focus on health promotion and illness prevention by providing screening, health education, resource development, referrals, and many more. Through these activities, population health concepts are threaded across the curriculum.

During the senior year of the baccalaureate program there is a 5 credit course that provides 2 credits of didactic content and 90 hours of public health nursing content. This course provides didactic content in epidemiology, policy and advocacy, health system organization and financing, and change theory. Students also complete community projects as part of this course sequence.  Evaluation is ongoing throughout the 5 semester experience. There is a semester by semester evaluation of the objectives defined for the community engagement each semester as well as a portfolio-based evaluation of student progress at the end of the program. NCLEX scores are always above the national mean, and have been above 95% for the last several years. Faculty have noted that students develop strong leadership skills and a stronger sense of personal efficacy as they progress through the 5 semester community engagement experience. Students of the program are valued by local employers for their strong skills. While systematic follow-up of program graduates has not yet been done, anecdotal reports indicate that students remain interested in public health nursing and many seek employment in this nursing specialty.

The nursing faculty have published the results of this integrated undergraduate nursing curriculum in various journals and have also presented their results at academic conferences.

Published resources
Journals:
Kruger, B. J., Roush, C., Olinzock, B. J. & Bloom, K. (2010). Engaging nursing students in a long-term relationship with a home-base community. Journal of Nursing Education. 49(1), 10-16.

Olinzock, B. J., Kruger, B. J., Wilburn, S. T., Wilburn, K. T. & Roush, C. (2009). Building a baccalaureate community nursing curriculum using a participatory evaluation approach. The Health Care Manager, 28(1), 1-7.

Kruger, B. J., Ahrens, W. D., Miller, D., Soles, E., Connelly, L. & Turrin, T. (2008). Blackboard unites service-learning partnerships. Academic Exchange Quarterly, 12(1), 148-152.

Conference Papers:
Olinzock, B. J., Kruger, B. J., Roush, C. S., Wilburn, K., & Wilburn S.  (2013, July). A participatory approach to development of the community nursing student assessment scale (CNSAS) to measure student learning outcomes. Paper presented at the 24th International Nursing Research Congress, Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, Prague Czech Republic.

Kruger, B. J., Wilburn, K., Olinzock, B. J., & Roush, C. S. (2013, July). Quantitative results from evaluation of community student service-learning in the UNF Home-base Model. Paper presented at the 24th International Nursing Research Congress, Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, Prague Czech Republic, July 2013.

Roush, C. S., Kruger, B. J., & Olinzock, B. J., & (2013, July). Qualitative findings from an evaluation of community student service-learning in the UNF Home-base Model. Paper presented at the 24th International Nursing Research Congress, Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, Prague Czech Republic.

Pope, B. L., Olinzock, B. J., Roush, C. S., & Kruger, B. J. (2013, July). Participatory evaluation of community outcomes of student service-learning. Paper presented at the 24th International Nursing Research Congress, Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, Prague Czech Republic.

Contact
Lillia Loriz, PhD, GNP, BC
Professor and Director, School of Nursing
University of North Florida
Brooks College of Health
lloriz@unf.edu

Worcester State University
Graduate Program

Worcester State University offers their public health nursing program at the Master’s level only. Their program began in 2008 and has between 7-10 graduates yearly. Their curriculum is based on the Quad Council’s Scope Standards Public Health Nursing and APHA’s 10 Essential Public Health Services. The curriculum strives to support student competency in each area of the Public Health Nursing Scope of Standards of Practice (2007). The program is small which allows for flexibility in student schedules; they also offer blended courses. One unique fact is that the curriculum has a heavy emphasis on environmental health which correlates well with public health. Their field practicum consists of 500 hours (2 courses 250 hours each) at the end of each program. The student is issued a student handbook that describes the practicum in detail. At the beginning of the practicum students and faculty develop a “learning contract” (a self-evaluation of the student to decide what the practicum will look like, students learning outcomes, and deliverables, identification of focus interests and standards students are trying to achieve competency in). The local or state level public health agencies (ex. Mass League of Community Health Centers) identify and share their needs with the nursing school. The school then matches the agency and the student based on the agency’s needs and the student’s interests. The student is then assigned to complete the clinical practicum component of the course. The uniqueness in this assignment is that these students are most frequently sent to agencies where there are no other nurses. This allows the student to develop leadership skills and the ability to develop independent roles (i.e. Student was assigned to an agency to develop an implementation plan based on Massachusetts’s new law making it illegal to dispose of needles, syringes or lancets in regular trash. The student developed an innovative implementation plan that is now being used in 5 towns in this state). 

Interesting facts: Nursing school students have been awarded stipends from the local public health agencies for their practicums. Student often get published after completing the program (80%).

Evaluation
Students are expected to develop a portfolio demonstrating outcomes and examples of activities completed corresponding with the expected outcomes stated in the beginning of their practicum. The faculty and preceptor perform a mid-term evaluation of the student, very basic just based on satisfaction with student and progress toward achieving SLOs and goals.

Please contact Dr. Chalupka if you would like examples or templates of the curriculum materials.

Readings
Course Packets are developed with scholarly publications (environmental readings as well)
Text Book-Caring and Community Concepts and Models for Service-Learning in Nursing
Text Book- Acting Locally Concepts in Environmental Studies

Contact
Stephanie Chalupka, EdD, RN, PHCNS-BC, FAAOHN
Worcester State University
schalupka@worcester.edu

Creighton University
Graduate Program

Creighton University School of Nursing offers an on-line graduate-level interdisciplinary course in global health issues that connects students with a multi-year field project in Tanzania. The course is based on the One Health ecological model that enables students to understand the interconnected determinants of health in human and animal populations. Graduate students in nursing, pharmacy, medicine and medical anthropology have taken the course to gain a more comprehensive understand of global health concepts. During the semester students are asked to participate in a global health café weekly discussion which is evaluated by the instructor. They also report on a sojourner interview that they conduct with an international visitor to the United States, eliciting perspectives of national and local health systems and treatments. As a learning community the students then complete a comparative analysis of health systems around the world. Additional assignments involve an in-depth ethnographic analysis and completion of a GIS training and application project. The capstone experience in the course requires each student to prepare a video presentation that summarizes their understanding of a selected region from an ethnographic, geographic, and global health perspective. These videos are shared in a class global health consortium discussion. Students also evaluate each video using predetermined rubrics. The School of Nursing encourages the advanced public health graduate students to become involved in Global Health Development online, a global health discussion community mediated through Harvard University. Through the GHDonline discussions advanced public health students gain an appreciation for the breadth and depth of global health endeavors and the role of the advanced practice nurse in collaborating interdisciplinarily for solutions to global health problems.

Contact
Dianne Travers Gustafson, PhD, RN
Creighton University
dtravers@creighton.edu

Emory University
Undergraduate Program

Emory University School of Nursing has developed a disaster-preparedness simulation exercise as part of the undergraduate course in community health nursing. In this simulation small groups of 5-6 undergraduate nursing students are immersed into a scene depicting a tornado-ravaged assisted living facility with a variety of resident conditions that require triage decisions in an environment of post-disaster chaos. Students are prepared for the simulation through a didactic class that introduces them to the principles of Basic Disaster Life Support (BDLS) as defined in the AMA BDLS model. After the didactic preparation students are taken in small groups through the simulation experience and a debriefing session. The simulation experience has been positively evaluated by the students and evaluation results have been included in the Public Health Nursing article describing the use of this simulation experience. Dr. Spencer also secured a small amount of funds from the School of Public Health at Emory, in order to develop a coalition of Schools of Nursing in Georgia. Each year 2 representatives from each school of nursing in Georgia met with faculty at Emory University to discuss how to introduce Emergency Preparedness into the nursing curriculum. This collaboration between academia lasted a total of five years and depended on generous funding from the School of Public Health and the CDC.

Contact
Linda Spencer 
Emory University 
laspenc@emory.edu

Reference
Kaplan, B.G., Connor, A., Ferrantr, E.P.,Holmes, L., and Spencer, L. (2012). Use of an emergency preparedness disaster simulation with undergraduate nursing students. Public Health Nursing. 29(5), 44-51. Doi /10.1111/phn2011.29.issue-1/issuetoc. 

Texas Christian University
Undergraduate Program

The undergraduate program leading to a baccalaureate degree in nursing has a two course 5 credit sequence of public health nursing content in the last semester of the senior year. The courses, a 3 credit graded didactic course in public health nursing concepts and a 2 credit pass-no credit practicum, are organized using the Clinical Prevention and Population Health Curriculum Framework for Health Professions, the ANA Scope and Standards for Public Health Nursing, and the Minnesota Wheel for Public Health Nursing Interventions. The concepts inherent in these models are presented in the didactic course and linked to aggregate focused practice applications using a team based approach to the practicum projects.

Three examples of these projects are 1.) Safe Routes to School – in this project groups of undergraduate students collaborated with the community (city planners, civil engineer, school district officials and city officials) to build a community-mediated proposal to the city council to improve routes that children took to school. The project spanned several years in which undergraduate nursing students worked with the community to document problems with routes to school, provide background information, and craft proposals for improvements. The project resulted in a 9.4 million dollar bond package commitment to improve the school routes. 2.) Emergency preparedness capacity building using a routine flu immunization project as an exemplar that develops assessment, planning, and implementation skills for mass immunizations and public health leadership. In this project undergraduate students mobilize limited resources over a short time-frame to immunize a community. They are charged with development of points of distribution that maximize immunization coverage with minimal available resources. This exercise develops the skills needed to manage mass immunizations that might be required in a disaster situation. Faculty serve as consultants to insure project success yet allow the student teams to manage the entire project, further developing leadership skills and confidence of the novice nursing student.3) Development of culturally appropriate and acceptable health screening services working with a Muslim community as a cooperating partner. In this project undergraduate students develop skills in cultural awareness and respectful delivery of essential screening and health education services. They develop a culturally acceptable approach to service delivery in a real world community setting.

For all projects an outcomes grid is developed consistent based on the measurable objectives defined for the specific community project. While the undergraduate program is largely based on the medical model, the student evaluations of the Public health nursing experience have been largely positive. The Public Health faculty help students grasp the focus on the public health model of primary prevention by  providing an aggregate focused, team delivered, evidence based, meaningful real world needed interventions for the populations they serve.

Contact
Sharon Canclini, RN, MS, CNE
Texas Christian University
s.canclini@tcu.edu

University of Illinois at Chicago
Undergraduate and Graduate Program

The University of Illinois at Chicago received an education grant from HRSA, Bureau of Health Professions to establish a project focused on advancing public health nursing education in Illinois (APHNE). The project design was based on an analysis of the gaps in knowledge, skills, and training identified by practicing public health nurses in Illinois as well as identified curriculum improvements for basic and advanced public health nursing training. The organization of the APHNE project ensured representation from members of the local and state health departments, school health practitioners, occupational health providers, and academic partners. A state advisory board was established together with five regional consortia to represent all areas in the State of Illinois. A continuing education program was established for practicing public health nurses. Curriculum innovations at the University of Illinois were also completed to provide flexible degree options that allowed students to progress quickly to an MSN with a public health nursing specialization, or to the DNP degree. The MS/MPH was also an option. The curriculum innovations were designed to strengthen the population health focus in the basic nursing curriculum and to enable a smooth transition between undergraduate and graduate levels of training. This was accomplished through the design of a graduate entry program (GEP) that supported seamless progression from RN to graduate education in public health. The curriculum changes resulted in a 400% increase in public health nursing graduate students and was judged to be successful by the program participants. The continuing education program also strengthened the skills and knowledge of health department nurses both in the practice of public health nursing and in the ability to work collaboratively with other professionals to support population health. Further outcome and impact evaluation studies are in process as are several publications summarizing the APHNE initiative.

Contact
Kathleen A. Baldwin, PhD, RN
Director, Peoria Regional Program
College of Nursing
University of Illinois, Chicago
Telephone: (309) 671-8467

University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill
Undergraduate and Graduate Program

Nursing students at all levels need to understand the magnitude and impact of obesity in the United States. In June 2013 the American Medical Association designated obesity as a “disease”, a designation which could have a profound effect on treatment and reimbursement at both the individual and the community level. A simulation has been developed that involves both undergraduate public health nursing students and graduate advanced practice nursing students in assessing an obese patient in an ambulatory care setting. Prior to the simulation undergraduate public health nursing students watch “The Weight of the Nation” a four-part series developed by HBO, Inc. They also review the social epidemiologic, economic and population health data on obesity and conducted a community focused assessment to determine the impact of this health condition on their practice community. The simulation experience was created through a team of interested graduate nurse practitioner faculty and an undergraduate public health nursing faculty member. Faculty incorporated not only a public health focus but also a primary care component that mirrored the challenge posed in the Institute of Medicine report on public health and primary care to more closely integrate community and primary care to support improvement in population health outcomes.  In preparation for the simulation experience students also viewed the videos developed by the Rudd Center at Yale University on weight bias and stigma as well as read Cohen, L., Perales, D., Steadman, C. (2005) The O Word: Why the Focus on Obesity is Harmful to Community Health as well as other evidence based practice literature. Faculty noted that scheduling the two levels of nursing students, the lack of information on proper assessment techniques and measurement tools for the obese patient, and the limitations of the obesity simulator were challenges that had to be overcome. Students evaluated the experience positively noting that this was one of the few times that obesity had been highlighted during their clinical education. Suggestions for future development of the experience include the incorporation of cross-disciplinary teams in the simulation and more interaction between the NP students and the undergraduate students before and after the simulation. 

Contact
Beth F. Lamanna, WHNP, MPH, RN
Clinical Assistant Professor
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
School of Nursing
lamanna@email.unc.edu

Wayne State University
Graduate Program

The advanced practice public health nursing curriculum innovation is part of a HRSA supported graduate nursing distance education program that is shared with students in advanced psychiatric mental health nursing. The program is located in medically underserved areas across the State of Michigan. The shared clinical courses provide 2 credit hours of didactic work and then 4 credits of clinical experiences in the nursing specialty of the individual student (Public Health Nursing or Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing). As part of the joint educational experience students collaborate on community-based intervention projects such as disaster management or emergency preparedness. The combination of public health nursing with psychiatric advanced practice nursing results in community interventions that provide a range of essential services. A recent class project on school violence was presented at a regional meeting of campus security services. The program has enrolled 30 advanced practice public health nurses and 70 psych NP nurses. There have also been 2 DNP graduates with a concentration in public health nursing.

Contact
Feleta Wilson, PhD, RN
Wayne State University
Feleta.wilson@wayne.edu

American University of Beirut
Undergraduate Program

The advanced practice public health nursing curriculum innovation is part of a HRSA supported graduate nursing distance education program that is shared with students in advanced psychiatric mental health nursing. The program is located in medically underserved areas across the State of Michigan. The shared clinical courses provide 2 credit hours of didactic work and then 4 credits of clinical experiences in the nursing specialty of the individual student (Public Health Nursing or Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing). As part of the joint educational experience students collaborate on community-based intervention projects such as disaster management or emergency preparedness. The combination of public health nursing with psychiatric advanced practice nursing results in community interventions that provide a range of essential services. A recent class project on school violence was presented at a regional meeting of campus security services. The program has enrolled 30 advanced practice public health nurses and 70 psych NP nurses. There have also been 2 DNP graduates with a concentration in public health nursing.

Contact
Feleta Wilson, PhD, RN
Wayne State University
Feleta.wilson@wayne.edu

California State University-Long Beach
Undergraduate and Graduate Program

The California State University at Long Beach provides summer engagement programs in community health nursing to undergraduate and graduate students through placement in various international locations that allow a group of students and a faculty member to engage in community health projects in developed, developing, and domestic locations. These projects focus on the social determinants of health and may range from work on clean water projects in Tanzania to rural development projects in underserved areas of the United States. Graduate students have a chance to present their class and research projects at international global, cultural, and social issues conferences. During these times, the time is extended into visiting community settings visits that enlighten students by partaking in experiences such as visiting villages on the Amazon River and doing community needs assessments and addressing health issues as part of their clinical experiences.

Another interesting approach to community health nursing in this program is through the academic practice partnership with Long Beach Memorial Hospital. This partnership was developed by Dr. Pyllis Cooper in consultation with Dr. Savitri Singh-Carlson at California State University, Long Beach. In this partnership senior undergraduate students are assigned to patients who access the emergency room for non-emergent conditions. The students assess the patients and then arrange to follow-up with them in the community. During this experience undergraduate students learn to link families with essential community services that enable them to avoid unnecessary emergency room use. The students develop skill in creating community linkages, following-up on conditions in the home that might lead to acute care utilization, and increasing family health. The project creates a bridge between the acute care setting and the community health setting and teaches the undergraduate student to address family health needs using community resources. Graduate students are engaged in collecting data to evaluate the program, measure outcomes, and work with the undergraduate students. Undergraduate students  demonstrate a clear change in attitude after the experience, they realize the need for interdisciplinary work and for developing community linkages. 

Contact
Savitri Singh-Carlson, PhD
California State University, Long Beach
Savitri.Singh-Carlson@csulb.edu 

Millikin University
Undergraduate and Graduate Program

The Millikin University School of Nursing places traditional undergraduate, pre-licensure graduate and RN to BSN students in a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) in Decatur, Illinois.  Students are members of the case management team that includes nurse practitioners, pediatricians, family practice physicians, physician assistants, nutritionists, and licensed counselors. Students are active partners in the design and delivery of case management plans tailored to the medically underserved client and family. The experience includes active engagement of students in mentoring and coaching patients and their families. Students are also exposed to the social determinants of health as they focus on problems such as access to care, lifestyle choices, and health disparity that impact patients and families. This partnership has been ongoing since the late 1980s and provides students an opportunity to learn critical health education, community health, and interdisciplinary team skills. The experience involves senior year undergraduate and pre-licensure graduate students who engage with the Community Health Improvement Center (FQHC) for a nine credit academic experience.

Contact
N. Jo Carter, EdD., RN
Millikin University
jocarter@mail.millikin.edu

Northern Kentucky University
Undergraduate Program

The Nurse Advocacy Center for the Underserved (NACU) was established in 2003 by nursing faculty at Northern Kentucky University who recognized that there was an ever widening gap in health services for the poor in the community. Faculty and community health nursing students partner with agencies to assist underserved clients in managing their health problems and gaining access to necessary primary health care services. Baccalaureate students are placed in NACU sites 1 day a week for 8 weeks and they earn academic clinical credit for their work. Students develop rapport with community members and appreciation for the concepts of social justice and equal access to necessary care as they develop their clinical assignments. Students work alongside faculty and volunteer RNs to provide clinical support services such as health screening, Blood pressure and blood glucose monitoring, and basic wound care. Clinical sites include places where the homeless gather including an emergency overnight shelter and church which serves twice weekly free meals; subsidized public housing sites; and two residential substance abuse treatment centers for men and women. They also learn population assessment and observational skills as they work in the NACU sites. Implementation of the NACU services is important since the underserved community uses the emergency room when other services are not available. In areas where nurses are working emergency room use has decreased by 70%. The critical element that assures effectiveness is the partnership with the community and the trust relationship that has been built over time. The NACU is in its 10th year of operation and has been very effective in providing safety-net care in urban areas that are not well linked with the health services infrastructure. The NACU is increasingly important to the community and as a public health nursing teaching opportunity since public health department that also worked with students has experienced recent budget constraints.

Contact
Kristine Pfendt, Associate Professor
Northern Kentucky University
pfendtk@nku.edu

Oregon Health and Science University
Undergraduate Program

The Oregon Health and Science University undergraduate nursing program has developed an interprofessional care access network (I-CAN). This project is funded by a HRSA grant that supports partnership development and interprofessional practice. The I-CAN Project involves the School of Nursing, the School of Medicine, and the Global Health Center as founding educational partners. The initial community partners are a primary care clinical and two community organizations focused on providing supportive services to the vulnerable populations in inner-city Portland. Community health student teams are composed of medical and undergraduate nursing students who cooperate with a faculty in residence to provide public health outreach to these vulnerable clients. The focus of the team’s interventions is healthcare services that maximize access to the social determinants of health. For example, student teams may help a vulnerable client navigate the complex health insurance system in order to gain safety-net health insurance coverage. Teams also work with chronically ill clients to understand and cooperate with complex medication regimens. The I-CAN Project has incorporated iPAD-based technology that enables student teams to upload community health and client data directly to a secure server for later analysis, provides immediate access to student-produced client education materials, and provides a real-time link to translation resources so that student teams can communicate with non-English speaking clients wherever they are. The goal of the I-CAN Project is to decrease unnecessary emergency room and 911 use age by supporting effective wellness and primary care services. The outcomes of the I-CAN Project experience are defined by client satisfaction with services provided as well as outcomes that signal appropriate use of health resources and decreased health emergencies. Baseline population data has been collected on the social determinants of health including housing, insurance coverage, and access to health care services. The project will expand to additional sites in southern Oregon and Portland in subsequent grant years. A course rubric for evaluation of the public health nursing competencies is available upon request.

Contact
Peggy Wros, PhD, RN
Oregon Health and Science University
wros@ohsu.edu

References
The Interprofessional Collaborative (2011) Core Competencies for Interprofessional Practice

I-CAN Project

I-CAN Video Announcement

Pima County/University of Arizona
Undergraduate and Graduate Program

An exciting partnership between the Pima County Public Library and the Pima County Health Department has created opportunities for public health nursing in the Tucson, Ariz., public library system. This partnership was created to provide more help to library patrons seeking information about health and health care services, address the increasing numbers of behavioral health issues in the library, and to reduce the number of 911 calls related to behaviors. Frequently, patrons required more help and support than the librarians alone could provide, so the library system approached the county health department for assistance. One FTE of a public health nurse position from the Pima County Health Department was assigned to the library. The cost of this position is shared between the library and the county health department. The public health nurse provides health information, referral services, health screening, and follow-up to ensure that patrons are able to find needed services. For the homeless library patrons, the nurse is a source of help, information, and support to get connected to services. The public health nurse also advocates for patrons in need of help who might not be able to afford to pay for services. The University of Arizona sends nursing students to the library for their community health rotation. These students have worked with the public health nurses to conduct community assessments, health education classes, and targeted community interventions such as a falls prevention program. The nursing students also developed a project to address hunger in the community. Staff involved in the library community health program says that good planning, clear goals, and the use of a planning model are building blocks that lead to program success. Since the program began, there has been a decrease in 911 calls from the library for behavioral health issues; at the same time, there has been an increase in 911 calls for urgent health problems that might have been missed without the public health nurse’s intervention. There is a great deal of community support for the program, which successfully addresses critical community needs.

Contact
Amber Mathewson
Deputy Director
Pima County Public Library 
amber.mathewson@pima.gov

Kathleen Malkin
Public Health Administrator
Nursing Services, Pima County Health Department
Kathleen.malkin@pima.gov

Richmond City Health District Virginia Commonwealth University
Undergraduate Program

The Richmond City Health District and the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) School of Nursing have developed a partnership to support public health nursing clinical training in the health district. The five satellite clinics of the health department  have been established in public housing complexes in the district. The Richmond Health District developed these satellite clinics with Title 10 funding beginning in 2009 with one site. Today there are five sites serving as gateway clinics connecting local residents to primary care and providing preventative and health education services to public housing residents. These services are provided cooperatively between the health district and VCU School of Nursing students and faculty. Three of the clinics act as community health clinical sites and both RN and NP staff at all sites serve as preceptors to undergraduate and graduate students. One specific clinic, the Mosby Resource Center, is financially supported by the School of Nursing and also utilizes a nurse practitioner from the school to provide clinical services one day a week. Services at the clinics focus on health education, health system navigation, and health promotion and disease prevention programs. Services are delivered using a nurse-driven model of care utilizing community health workers as well as nursing providers.

Undergraduate nursing education is supported with didactic coursework that focuses on community-level needs assessment, epidemiology, communication, and evaluation skills. The three-credit didactic course is paired with a two-credit clinical rotation, and follows a service-learning model in which the students are embedded in community sites for the duration of the course. This course is placed in the last semester of the undergraduate year, so that students are able to incorporate knowledge from previous undergraduate clinical rotations, while partnering with the community members who work in and access these services. Students, faculty, and community members collaborate to develop a semester-long service-learning project that meets a community-identified need. Students then present their projects at a professional-style poster session at the end of the semester. Many of these projects support community health priorities in the practice setting. Recent projects included providing a flu vaccine clinic to community residents, developing a map of accessible resources for low-income residents, and running a health careers club for school aged children.

Student evaluations of the experience are positive and the experience has also become a public health workforce development bridge since several undergraduate students have selected public health nursing as their professional focus upon graduation, while others have chosen to enter graduate education in public health.

Contact
For further information on this exciting partnership between the Richmond City Health District and the Virginia Commonwealth University please contact:

Amy Popovich, RN MSN
Resource Center Supervisor
Richmond City Health District 
400 E. Cary St.
Richmond, VA 23219
Amy.Popovich@vdh.virginia.gov

The University of Tennessee Health and Science Center
Graduate Program

The University of Tennessee Health Science, Center College of Nursing partners with two state health departments to provide support for mutual collaboration and program improvement in the delivery of public health nursing to citizens in Tennessee and Arkansas. The program provides opportunities for faculty, public health practitioners and PHN DNP students to use reflection about opportunities to improve public health nursing practice. The PHN DNP students base interventions on the needs of the communities they serve using Quad Council public health nursing competencies.  One of the challenges in this practice improvement partnership has been to shift the emphasis from individual-level interventions in the community to population-level systems impact. The involvement of public health nursing faculty together with senior management at the health department has motivated line managers and students to learn these important skills and make this important change in evidence-based effectiveness. The program has enabled line managers and senior managers in the health department to improve leadership skills through planning and communication about program goals. The students, practitioners, and community faculty focus on common ground when considering goals that have population and system’s impact. The program emphasizes PHN clinical interventions that are based solidly on the implementation and documentation of the public health nursing core competencies as they apply to the communities’ defined needs. Students, practitioners and community faculty design logic models with action plans that are based on the expressed community needs and then match the core competencies to professional capacity and competence. Students also build a portfolio of activities to demonstrate expertise in each core competency area. Summaries of the issues and evidence-based recommendations for improvement are produced by the student.  The programs use logic models to link clinical process measures with anticipated short and long term outcomes. The “CAN-DO-IT” program, developed with HRSA funding, provides participants with a better understanding of how their everyday actions translate into effective, evidenced-based public health nursing interventions. It also has provided students with a deeper insight into population perspective necessary for effective primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention in public health. Dissemination of the “CAN-DO-IT” program through presentations at APHA meetings by several of the faculty and students have demonstrated the effectiveness of the model. Follow-on projects include analysis of school and homeless health programs, disaster and syndrome surveillance programs, minority health interventions focused on improving infant mortality, congestive heart failure, equity and access to health care, and programs that support the development of public health nursing leadership in selected southern states. Today the “CAN-DO-IT” model supports a number of community safety-net organizations as well as a collaborative and developing program to respond to elder abuse and neglect in the region.

Contact
Patricia M. Speck, DNSc, APN, FNP-BC, DF-IAFN, FAAFS, FAAN
The University of Tennessee Health and Science Center College of Nursing
pspeck@uthsc.edu

University of Buffalo
Undergraduate Program

The University at Buffalo School of Nursing uses a variety of approaches to provide community health, pediatric and mental health nursing experiences. These include placing student in residential addiction program for women and their children, a Dedicated Education Unit (DEU) with the VNA for home visits across population groups including pediatric and mental health, and a DEU in a community based hospice program with an inpatient and home care service. Recent health system changes as a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) have resulted in less availability of acute care pediatric experiences since inpatient unites have closed. Responding to the need for hands-on experiences for students in pediatrics the School of Nursing has collaborated with a child care center on campus  as well as with a day camp for medically fragile and underserved children from the community. These experiences have been hands-on community pediatric experiences that have worked well to enable students to gain experiences in pediatric nursing as well as community  and mental health care.  Upper division nursing students will be placed for 5 weeks with the VNA and 5 weeks in acute care as well as in a DEU focused on hospice home care. During the Public Health for Population Health course students engage in service-learning activities with community based health and social service agencies. During these experiences students conduct a community assessment and also learn descriptive epidemiology in order to understand the distribution and determinants of disease in the target populations and to understand community disease patterns. The curriculum emphasizes critical thinking skills, leadership at the bedside to promote quality health outcomes and safety,  and evidence based practice. To reinforce these practices, students complete the IHI Basic Certificate on Quality and Safety. The University at Buffalo School of Nursing was the first SON in the United States to implement this requirement within the curriculum. Students’ NCLEX scores have improved and remained high during the curricular shift to hands-on community-based care. Faculty emphasize the need for students to have hands-on community care experiences that provide the opportunity to develop clinical skills and critical thinking in the community setting.

Resources
Berwick, D.M., Nolan, T.W., and Wittington, J., (2008). The triple aim:  care, health, and cost.  Health Affairs. 27:3, 759-769.  DOI: 10.1377/hlthaff.27.3.759

Institute for Health Improvement. IHI Open School Courses and Certificates.

Contact
S. Grinslade, PhD, APRN-BC, 
Undergraduate Program Director and Clinical Professor
University at Buffalo, School of Nursing

University of Hartford
Undergraduate and Graduate Program

The University of Hartford RN to BSN and MSN students participate in Project Horizon, a service learning experience, for 1 day a week during their senior year. Project Horizon was developed over 20 years ago by nursing faculty at the University of Hartford in response to community needs in nearby Hartford, Connecticut. Hartford is one of the poorest urban areas in the United States with 32.9% of the population below the poverty line. All students who participate in Project Horizon are registered nurses who are students in either the RN to BSN program or the MSN program in public health nursing or nursing education. Project Horizon is based on the internship model described by Switzer and King (2009). In this model students are encouraged to understand not only the phases of learning inherent in the internship experience, but also to develop self-understanding as they participate in this experience. (Switzer, F.H.and King, M., 2009, p 13). Consistent with this model, the Project Horizon experience is organized into a day-long 3 credit didactic class and a 3 credit service learning experience. After a careful orientation that includes principles of safety, training in communication, and cultural awareness students are introduced to the service learning sites. Students spend either the morning or early evening hours at these sites that include a soup kitchen, urban school, senior center, homeless shelter or boys/girls club. The didactic portion of the class is held mid-day. An important feature of Project Horizon is the level of clinical supervision that is offered during the service learning.  Carefully selected adjunct clinical instructors visit the clinical facilities weekly during the first semester and biweekly during the second semester. This level of clinical guidance provides a solid basis of support for both the facility and the student. Evaluation of the experience is based on the principles of participatory action research (Simonson, L.J. and Bushaw, V.A. , 1993). In this model the agency and the community are active participants in evaluation of the student and the project. On June 12, 2013, Project Horizon will receive the first-ever Campus-Community Partnership Award from the Connecticut Campus Compact. The Campus-Community Partnership Award recognizes an outstanding campus-community partnership that is built and sustained on strong principles of equity, trust and respect. The purpose of the award is to honor partnerships that have successfully demonstrated the true value of collaboration between higher education and its identified communities. This award drives the improvement of health outcomes by highlighting Project Horizon as exemplary in the collaboration between academia and public health. Follow the links below to learn more about this award and other publications about Project Horizon. 

Description of the Project through the College of Education, Nursing and Health Professions

Project Horizon to Receive Inaugural Campus-Community Partnership Award

Reference
Simonson, L.J. and Bushaw, V.A., (1993). Participatory action research:  easier said than done.  The American Sociologist. 24:1, 27-34.

Contact
Karen Breda, PhD
University of Hartford
breda@hartford.edu

University of Hawaii at Manoa
Graduate Program

Student Nurse Participation in Pacific Partnership Humanitarian Missions
The University of Hawaii at Manoa (UHM) School of Nursing participates in the United States Navy sponsored annual Pacific Partnership humanitarian mission. During Pacific Partnership, a multinational - interdisciplinary team of professionals from various sectors (including public health, acute care services, dentistry, veterinarian  services, engineering and others) partner with the host nations  for subject matter expert exchange endeavors and provision of services to individuals and communities. The primary role of the UHM School of Nursing (faculty and students) in Pacific Partnership is to engage in community/public health subject matter expert exchange endeavors which focus on topics such as disaster preparedness, community health, environmental health, prevention and management of communicable and non-communicable diseases. This program provides nursing students with valuable skills in community/public health nursing, and strengthens interest and awareness in global health. Many things are learned, including, how to work in multi-national, interdisciplinary teams, how to collaborate with and learn from other cultures, and how to function in low resource settings. UHM Nursing has participated in Pacific Partnership for the past three years, and has involved approximately 25 faculty and students. Program evaluation is done on two levels: formative evaluation to assess UHM planning for the mission, and summative evaluation to assess impact on faculty, students and host nation participants. Evaluation findings indicate that students increase their knowledge, skills, abilities and confidence for multidisciplinary collaboration with international partners, gain an understanding of different cultures (including the host nation and military cultures), and increase their own capabilities for providing nursing care in low resource environments. Through the reciprocal subject matter expert exchange activities, the host nation learns from the UHM faculty and students, and the UHM faculty and students learn from the host nation. There are many other volunteer humanitarian assistance programs that nursing students can engage in where similar community/public/global health knowledge, skills, abilities and attitudes can be can developed.

Contact
Kristine Qureshi, DNSc, RN, CEN, APHN-BC
University of Hawaii at Manoa School of Nursing
kqureshi@hawaii.edu

Resources
Commander, US Pacific Fleet
http://www.cpf.navy.mil/pacific-partnership/2012/

University of Missouri
Undergraduate Program

The University of Missouri Sinclair School of Nursing provides a two-week study abroad opportunity in community health nursing to undergraduate students through placements in Cape Coast, Ghana or Cape Town, South Africa. This opportunity allows a group of students and a faculty member to engage in community health outreach and work in a public health clinic. The program runs twice a year typically the first two weeks of August and the first two weeks of January. Students learn adaptability, resourcefulness, cultural awareness and problem solving in the international setting. They also gain 90 community health clinical hours during the project. In addition to the field work, the students participate in afternoon classes focused on topics such as cultural competence, resourcefulness, social justice and problem solving. The logistics of the project are all managed by the school’s study abroad office at the University in cooperation with an external program that specializes in study abroad logistic management. The program has staff onsite that set up and help facilitate the experience during the two weeks of practice. Faculty is only responsible for managing for the academic content in the two week program. The program has been very successful, and will have over 60 undergraduate students since 2011. The evaluation of the project is conducted through a likert-scale attitude measuring tool as well as a journaling exercise. Students are required to respond to a journal topic before they travel, during their trip, and after their trip is completed. The journals provide evidence of significant attitude changes after the experience. This public health international immersion experience is being documented in several research projects including a doctoral dissertation focused on the study abroad experience. It will also be presented at the ACHNE/APHN meeting in June of 2013.

Contact
Lynelle Phillips, RN MPH
University of Missouri Sinclair School of Nursing
phillipslm@health.missouri.edu

University of Washington
Undergraduate and Graduate Program

The University of Washington has established three major academic/practice partnerships based on the participatory action research model. These multi-year partnerships have provided a solid base for faculty development, graduate and undergraduate education in community health. Faculty, graduate students, undergraduate students and the community engage in a collaborative relationship to support community-oriented health projects. The three communities that participate in the partnerships are Native American reservations, a Chinese Information and Service Center in an urban area, and an immigrant community that is part of the Seattle metropolitan area. Within these communities various agencies and tribes work closely with faculty and students on a diverse array of grass-roots projects that support community health. The projects include community gardens, obesity and diet education, breast cancer prevention, physical fitness, school health, food banks, adolescent health and wellness education, and community disaster planning. After a year of work at the grass-roots, graduate students focus their second year at the policy level to reinforce community action. The policy-level activities have been with organizations such as public sector health departments, non-profit community action coalitions, political action groups, and cultural advocacy groups who work with government to support community health. Faculty members are assigned to a specific academic/practice partnership and engage in teaching, research, and service with the partnership as their focus. Engaging tenure-track faculty in the partnership model ensures not only service and teaching, but also applied research. Faculty has received applied research grants that enable capacity-building projects that benefit the community partner as well as the faculty involved in the grant. These activities have resulted in faculty and student publications and support the scholarly development of the tenure-track faculty member in addition to support for the community partner. Evaluations of the partnerships show that students positively regard the partnership as an educational experience although they do have some concerns about faculty to student communication during the experience. The academic/practice partnership model of community health nursing is well-established at the University of Washington.

Contact
Noel J. Chrisman, PhD, MPH
University of Washington
noelj@u.washington.edu

Wichita State University
Undergraduate Program

Wichita State University has completed a pilot project in public health nursing education involving 30 pre-licensure students in an accelerated program. Service learning concepts provided the framework for the curricular innovation pilot.

The purpose of the pilot project was to provide on-site population-focused nursing services at community agencies not previously utilized as clinical sites for the “Care of Populations” course. Two under-resourced private elementary schools and one PACE1 program site agreed to participate. No other schools of nursing were present during the clinical rotation, eliminating issues of competition for clinical placement sites. Clinical experiences were complemented by the didactic portion of the course which provided contextual knowledge to support the students’ field projects. Several guest speakers visited class including health department nurses and APRNs.

Accelerated students and experienced faculty worked closely together with faculty remaining on site to facilitate and troubleshoot as needed. These accelerated students required very little direct supervision. They brainstormed, reviewed literature, developed work groups, divided assignments, and ultimately performed at a high level that was not anticipated. Personal maturity and the strong work ethic for which accelerated students are known were likely contributing factors.

At the schools, students collaborated with students, principals, pastors, teachers, and cooks to determine areas of need that could be impacted rapidly in a short period of time.  Health promotion needs were paramount, especially those related to risk assessment, water safety, nutrition, oral care, physical activity, heart disease, diabetes and cancer. Assessment and planning involved windshield surveys, visits to health departments and neighborhood grocery stores, among others. Interventions included age-appropriate experiential healthy snack classes, health fairs, and culturally appropriate parent education.  New cafeteria policies regarding portion sizes and after school snacks are in process as a result of the students’ work at one school.

At the PACE site, the COPD patient sub- population was the focus of most student activities based largely on the assessment of the interprofessional staff and quality improvement data. Direct and indirect interventions included educational materials such as films, power point presentations, and posters geared toward staff and participants (patients). Correct use of spacers with metered dose inhaled medications, home oxygen safety, and dietary salt alternatives were areas of focus for the COPD sub-population. It will be interesting to see how these products are used in the future. Students noted that PACE bus drivers provided considerable social support while driving participants to and from various appointments and suggested future attention on the role of bus drivers and wellness promotion.

Implementation of this project required experienced and motivated faculty committed to innovation and to increasing nursing impact in community settings. Extra meetings were required to share experiences, ideas and to “tweak” the project as needed. Evaluations of the pilot project were favorable from the students, faculty and communities involved and the project will be continued in the accelerated program.

Future plans include partnering with more area private schools (especially those in low income areas) and possibly with senior centers. Traditional and accelerated public health faculty are currently working together to determine next steps in implementation of this clinical approach with much larger volumes  of traditional students. Further evaluation and impact assessment are needed.

Contact
Peggy Hernandez, EdD, APRN, PMHCNS-BC, CNE
Assistant Professor of Nursing
Wichita State University
College of Health Professions
School of Nursing
1845 Fairmount Street
Wichita KS 67260-0041