Princeton, N.J.— Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action Director and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Senior Adviser for Nursing Susan B. Hassmiller, RN, PhD, FAAN, issued the following statement in response to the joint announcement from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, the American Association of Community Colleges, the Association of Community College Trustees, the National League for Nursing, and the National Organization for Associate Degree Nursing supporting academic progression for nursing students and graduates:
“The Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action applauds the efforts of these community college and nursing education leaders to support academic progression for nursing students and graduates. This collaborative agreement is a critical step to achieving our collective goal to advance nursing to meet America’s health care demands.
“The campaign, an initiative of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and AARP, envisions that all Americans will have access to high-quality, patient-centered care in a health care delivery system where nurses serve as essential partners. The campaign’s priorities are steeped in evidence found in the Institute of Medicine report The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health, which explicitly states that ‘major changes in the U.S. health care system and practice environments will require equally profound changes in the education of nurses both before and after they receive their licenses.’
“For decades community colleges have served as a pathway for individuals to pursue their education and build meaningful careers. We know that approximately 57 percent of nurses enter practice through community college programs. As a community college graduate myself, I know how essential these programs are to creating a diverse nursing workforce prepared to meet America’s health care needs in all areas of the country.
“Through the Campaign for Action, a nationwide network of grassroots coalitions has coalesced to advance nursing education progression. The campaign has identified four highly promising practice models with the potential to accelerate education progression efforts nationwide. Successful implementation of these models depends on strong partnerships with community colleges.
“We are facing a nursing shortage across the spectrum, including in hospitals, community health settings, and academic institutions. During an unprecedented primary care provider shortage, accelerated by an anticipated addition of 32 million Americans to our health care delivery system, we must collaborate and develop solutions.
“The Campaign for Action celebrates the steps taken by our community college and nursing education colleagues. We will continue to leverage our network of diverse stakeholders to encourage nurses to pursue academic career growth and development; develop academic programs that offer seamless academic progression; and create environments that support and encourage career development. This work will be realized only through alignment and collaboration, demonstrated by the organizations’ agreement on academic progression.”
About the Campaign for Action
The Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action envisions a health care system where all Americans have access to high-quality care, with nurses contributing to the full extent of their capabilities. The campaign is coordinated through the Center to Champion Nursing in America, an initiative of AARP, the AARP Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and includes 49 state Action Coalitions and a wide range of health care professionals, consumer advocates, policy-makers and the business, academic, and philanthropic communities.
About the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation focuses on the pressing health and health care issues facing our country. As the nation’s largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to health and health care, the Foundation works with a diverse group of organizations and individuals to identify solutions and achieve comprehensive, measurable, and timely change. For 40 years the Foundation has brought experience, commitment, and a rigorous, balanced approach to the problems that affect the health and health care of those it serves. When it comes to helping Americans lead healthier lives and get the care they need, the Foundation expects to make a difference in your lifetime. Follow the Foundation on Twitter (www.rwjf.org/twitter) or Facebook (www.rwjf.org/facebook).
AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization with a membership that helps people 50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial and affordable to them and society as a whole. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to either political campaigns or candidates. We produce AARP The Magazine, the definitive voice for 50+ Americans and the world's largest-circulation magazine with nearly 35 million readers; AARP Bulletin, the go-to news source for AARP's millions of members and Americans 50+; and our website, AARP.org. AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. We have staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands