This announcement solicits applications for the Nurse Education, Practice, Quality and Retention - Veterans Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program (VBSN).
The VBSN supports HRSAs strategic plan to improve access to quality health care and services; strengthen, the nations healthcare workforce;
build healthy communities; and improve health equity.
Sub-goals include increasing and diversifying the health workforce and ensuring that healthcare providers are trained to provide high quality care that is culturally and linguistically aligned.
The awarded VBSN applications will complement the collaborative efforts of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), the Department of Defense (DoD), and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to:
· Reduce barriers that prevent veterans from transitioning into nursing careers; · Develop BSN career ladder programs targeted to the unique needs of veterans; · Explore innovative educational models to award academic credit for prior health care experience/training or other relevant military training; · Address the growing national demand for BSN prepared Registered Nurses; and · Improve employment opportunities for veterans through high demand careers training as outlined in the Veterans Opportunity to Work under the VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011, www.benefits.va.gov/VOW.
For FY13, the Division of Nursing (DN) seeks four-year cooperative agreement applications that propose to develop and implement career ladder programs to increase the enrollment of veterans in BSN programs. The intermediate program goals are to facilitate the transition of veterans into the field of professional nursing, while building upon skills, knowledge, and training acquired during their military service in order to broaden employment opportunities.
The VBSN project will provide program participants with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to succeed in passing the National Council Licensing Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) and will provide a means of giving academic credit for prior military medical training and experience.
The methods for awarding credit may include challenge or competency exams and other innovative methods as applicable.
Under the VBSN program, applicants are expected to prepare veterans to enter the professional nursing field through innovative and evidenced-based pathways that will increase veterans enrollment, advancement, graduation, employment and retention within the field of nursing.
More specifically, the VBSN project should:
(1) Incorporate career ladder development for veterans into an existing BSN program; (2) Provide faculty development to enhance teaching strategies that address the unique needs of veterans (e.g., understanding scope of practice limitations in a civilian environment for veterans with healthcare provider training, building upon leadership training, and meeting the needs of veterans with physical or emotional issues that may impact learning); (3) Develop programs and/or methods to assess veteran competencies that are eligible for awarding of nursing academic credit; and (4) Include mentorship and supportive services (including outreach to veterans organizations) that address the unique challenges that veterans face when transitioning to civilian life, including post-traumatic stress disorder and other behavioral/mental health issues and other general work-family-life-balance issues that may negatively impact program completion and gaining employment in nursing after graduation.
The VBSN curriculum to be incorporated into the BSN program must:
(1) Use program funds to adapt the existing program to accommodate the needs of veterans, including the development and integration of veteran academic credit.
(2) There is no funding history for the VBSN cooperative agreements.