Saturday, August 16, 2014

States Use HHS Grants To Offset Care Gaps: In English? The Money's Fed, It Comes With Fed Strings Attached - One Way or Another

From the Feds who brought you FREE Healthcare, Here, Swallow Some More FREE Stuff.


Nursing programs get boost to help students pursue advanced degrees, offset primary care shortage

In the face of a looming primary care shortage and an ongoing rural health crisis, many healthcare programs invest in training nurses to work in underserved areas with the help of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
For example, HHS recently awarded a $600,000 grant to students pursuing master's degrees in the University of Maine's Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Program, according to the Bangor Daily News. The grant effectively pays four semesters' worth of tuition per student in the program.

"The goal of the funding is they want more care providers in underserved areas as soon as possible," said Nancy Fishwick, director of UMaine's School of Nursing.

Kelly McCoubrey, who works as a registered nurse at Downeast Community Hospital in Machias and plans to enroll in the FNP Master's program, said the region where she works has an inadequate number of healthcare practitioners. "I live in Washington County and hospitals are struggling to stay afloat. I thought I should probably [become a practitioner] now if I'm gonna do it," she told the Daily News.

Meanwhile, in Kentucky, HHS awarded a two-year, $670,000 grant to the University of Louisville's (U of L) School of Nursing, according to Louisville Business First. The school will apply the grant toward 15 new and current students' tuition, living expenses, books and program fees, according to the article. Washington state will get a grant of $300,000, the same amount it received in 2012,according to the Puget Sound Business Journal.

U of L aims to recruit students from underprivileged backgrounds and underserved communities in hopes they will want to serve their communities upon graduating. "Preparing AGNPs [adult-gerontology nurse practitioners] and FNPs in primary care is essential to offset the anticipated shortage of more than 400 primary care physicians in the Louisville Metro area by the year 2020," S. Lee Ridner, project director, associate dean for graduate programs and family nurse practitioner program coordinator, said in a statement.

Nor is nurse recruitment to close primary care gaps a new idea at the state level; a New Mexico campaign in 2013 aimed to expand the number of healthcare professionals in the state to account for patients newly covered by MedicaidFierceHealthcare previously reported.

To learn more:
- read the 
Daily News article
- here's the 
Louisville Business First article
- check out the 
Business Journal article
- read the U of L 

Related Articles:
Got Nurses? NM aims to recruit nurses via marketing campaign
Medicaid expansion to include older, sicker patients
Nursing shortage to reemerge
Nurse practitioners seek insurer credentials to practice primary care
Lenient NP scope-of-practice laws ease primary care shortage
Experts say rural healthcare in crisis

Thank You Mr Budryk and FierceHealthcare.

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