Friday, July 13, 2007: 1:45 PM-3:15 PM
Educating Racial and Ethnic Minorities for a Diverse Healthcare Workforce
Learning Objective #1: Understand the relationship between a racially and culturally diverse healthcare workforce and health outcomes and healthcare disparities.
Learning Objective #2: Discuss effective strategies to recruit, enroll and graduate racial/ethnic minorities in baccalaureate nursing programs.
The gross under-representation of racial/ethnic minorities in the health care workforce has been highlighted in many national reports published in the United States (US). The US population of African Americans, Latinos and Native Americans is now at 30% but is expected to exceed 50% by the year 2050. However, these groups are underrepresented among the pool of students receiving Bachelor of Science degrees from the US universities and they are even less likely to be enrolled in the health professions including nursing, dentistry, medicine and pharmacy. African Americans, Hispanic Americans and American Indians comprise over 25% of the US population but only 5% of them are dentists, 6% physicians, and 9% nurses. This lack of minority representation in the healthcare professions will have serious consequences for the US healthcare system and is certain to contribute to racial/ethnic disparities in health. Diversity in nursing, the nationís largest health professions group, has not increased substantially over time. The 2005 National Sample Survey of Nurses reported that in 2004 around 12% of the RN population was from non-White racial/ethnic minority groups. An estimated 88.4% of RNs indicated their racial/ethnic backgrounds as White, 4.6% as African American, 3.3% as Asian or Pacific Islander, 1.8% as Hispanic and 0.4% as American Indian or Alaska Native. An estimated 1.5% reported they were from two or more racial/ethnic backgrounds. These percentages are inadequate to meet the current and future needs of the diverse US population, and the problem must be addressed. The purpose of this symposium is to describe two programs funded by the Health Resource Services Administration to increase diversity of the nursing workforce through enrollment, retention, and graduation of underrepresented minorities in baccalaureate nursing programs. In addition, the relationship between a diverse workforce, cultural competence, and improved health outcomes for minority groups will be demonstrated.
Organizer:Veronica G. Parker, PhD
 Reducing Health Disparities Through a Culturally and Ethnically Diverse Health Professions Workforce
Barbara N. Logan, PhD, RN, FAAN, Veronica G. Parker, PhD
 Becoming Excellent Students in Transition to Nursing (BEST): A Program to Increase Nursing Workforce Diversity
Cynthia E. Degazon, PhD, RN
 Academic Collaboration for Underrepresented Minority Enrollment in Nursing (ACUMEN): An Initiative to Increase Diversity in Nursing Education and Workforce
Veronica G. Parker, PhD, Barbara N. Logan, PhD, RN, FAAN