JAMES MADISON UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF NURSING’S PROJECT TO HELP INCREASE NUMBER OF NURSES SERVING RURAL COMMUNITIES
Nursing educational institutions are making their own initiative to address nursing shortage in rural communities.
In an article, James Madison University School of Nursing has launched a new project expecting to help increase the number of nurses serving underserved areas.
The school is training nursing students in the Undergraduate Primary Care and Rural Education Project (UPCARE).
The project is designed to address nursing shortages for primary-care, mental-health and substance/opioid abuse treatment at the health clinics and will be focusing on Page County, because it is a rural, medically underserved area.
UPCARE is the result of a four-year, $2.7 million federal grant JMU received from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Nurse Education, Practice, Quality and Retention program. Its project partners will be Valley Health Page Memorial Hospital’s rural health centers and JMU’s Counseling and Psychological Services.
The federal program provided 42 grants nationwide. JMU was one of three Virginia universities among the recipients. The other two were George Mason University and Virginia Commonwealth University. “We are the only school in Virginia that will be focusing on rural areas,” says Erika Metzler Sawin, the director of UPCARE at JMU.
Nationally, rural health and primary-care medicine are not emphasized in many nursing programs, Sawin notes. “This will help us to incorporate those topics into the curriculum in general.”
Students applying to the project before entering JMU’s nursing program will become UPCARE Scholars. During the four-year funding period, 56 scholars are expected to receive training. “Hopefully this will help students learn more about non-hospital areas where they can work and also about working in primary care,” Sawin added.
Erudite Nursing Institute™ supports JMU – School of Nursing’s project to increase the number of nurses serving rural areas. This way, every student who’ll enter this valuable project will know how health supervision is much needed in medically underserved areas.
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