UW Health sees higher retention rates after launch of post-grad clinical residency program
MADISON, Wis. — In an effort to combat a nationwide nurse shortage, UW Health has started a new program aimed at helping nurses avoid burnout.
The concept is simple: Place nurses fresh out of nursing school in clinic setting with a mentor rather than hospital settings. Nurses involved in the program also take two nursing classes a month to serve as a stepping stone between their schooling and career.
“There is this notion that new nurses have to work in a hospital setting and take care of sick patients in a hospital and you can’t work in a clinic setting until later in your career,” Nursing Education Specialist Terri White said. “But clinic nursing has opportunity for extensive growth. Clinic nurses are critical parts of the healthcare team and we are here to give them the training they need to succeed in this demanding and important profession.”
The 12-month program started in February. Since its launch, UW Health’s first-year retention rate for nurses has been 97%. The national average for hospitals with similar programs is 91%. For those without a similar program, the retention rate is 71%.
With more than 500,000 nurses expected to retire by 2022, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics projected a need for more than 1.1 new nurses to avoid an exacerbated shortage.
“By keeping nurses in the field through a program like this, we can do our part to address this looming nurse shortage,” White said.
There are two groups per year, one that starts in February and another in August.
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