Tuesday, 8 July 2008: 3:15 PM
Nursing educational programs throughout the world are searching for strategies which will increase the number of admissions, despite the shortage of prepared nursing faculty. The Texas Higher Education Coordination Board sponsored a grant competition to explore such strategies. Midwestern State University, in collaboration with Vernon College and United Regional Health Care System, were recipients of one of these grants. This session will describe the development, implementation and evaluation of a collaborative regional simulation center (RSC) designed to provide competency education and validation for nursing and allied health students and hospital staff in north central Texas. The session will include the rationale for the use of BSN-prepared lab mentors to provide the competency education validation, the relative responsibilities of the faculty members from the two schools and the lab mentors, and the strategies for developing simulation scenarios to enhance student critical thinking skills. The outcome of implementing the RSC over the three years of the grant will also be considered, particularly the impact on nursing student admissions, the cost-effectiveness of the center, and the steps taken to maintain the center following the grant.