University of Florida College of Nursing receives $3.6 million to address nursing shortage

by | Aug 11, 2022

 

  • The University of Florida (UF) College of Nursing is receiving nearly $4 million in state grants to create a nursing employment pipeline 
  • The funding, stylized as PIPELINE, will be utilized in an effort to meet state nursing workforce needs 
  • To meet target goals, UF will increase the number of admitted students to its nursing program as well expanding faculty numbers 

The University of Florida’s College of Nursing will receive $3.6 million in state grants referred to as Prepping Institutions, Programs, Employers, and Learners through Incentives for Nursing Education funding for the 2023 fiscal year.

This recurring yearly funding, stylized as PIPELINE, will help the state meet the demand for baccalaureate-prepared nurses, nurse practitioners, and nurse scientists.

“As the preeminent nursing institution in the state, we are proud to champion the advancement of nursing education,” said UF College of Nursing Dean Anna McDaniel. “With the PIPELINE funding, we will not only increase the supply of front-line BSN-prepared nurses but also grow our graduate student body, which will contribute to the nursing faculty pipeline and further address the current nursing shortage.”

In order to meet student enrollment targets, the university plans to increase the number of students admitted to its Doctor of Nursing Practice and Bachelor of Science in Nursing programs by expanding its faculty resources.

To help the college maximize supervised instructional time and expand the clinical placement options available to students, PIPELINE funding will be used to recruit nearly 20 new faculty at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. Enrollment at the UF Health Jacksonville campus is anticipated to increase by 50 percent in 2023, with enrollment at UF’s Gainesville expected to increase by approximately 15 percent.

In an interview with The Capitolist earlier this year, Florida Hospital Association (FHA) CEO Mary Mayhew explained that the current Registered Nurse turnover rate is 25 percent, also noting a turnover of over a third of its total critical care unit workforce. FHA projects a deficit of 59,100 nurses in Florida by 2035.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job growth for nurses in Florida is expected to grow by 21 percent, while 40 percent of nurses will approach retirement age in the next decade. The report also indicated that stressful working conditions caused by the pandemic were creating a surge in workers exiting the medical field.

With the grant, UF joins a growing conglomerate of universities across the state making strides to put more nurses in Florida’s workforce.

In April, HCA Healthcare, Inc., a leading healthcare provider, today announced that it will donate $1.5 million to Florida International University’s (FIU) Nicole Wertheim College of Nursing & Health Sciences (NWCNHS) in a partnership to expand its faculty and offer scholarships to increase nursing enrollment.

“HCA Florida Healthcare and FIU have a longstanding relationship and a shared commitment to serving South Florida,” said Chuck Hall, national group president of HCA Healthcare. “We are thrilled to announce this partnership with FIU to help address the nursing faculty shortage by supporting programs that help expand the number of registered nurses qualified to teach our country’s future nurses.”

Similarly, in June it was announced that tuition and fees will be paid for some of the University of South Florida College of Nursing (USFCON) accelerated students under a partnership with Moffitt Cancer Center and the university.

The scholarship includes tuition and fees for the entire program under the condition that students who apply must make a commitment to spend two years of employment at Moffitt after graduation. The partnership’s aim is to bridge the academic-practice gap by blending on-the-job training for student nurses with a structured transition program to the role of the professional nurse.

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