Dr. Andrea Houser joined the University of Providence’s School of Health Professions in August 2022 as Associate Dean of Nursing. With over 20 years of experience in clinical nursing and nursing education, Houser is well-versed in the current nursing workforce trends – including critical competencies and practices graduating nurses must have to succeed in the fast-paced healthcare and nursing environment. In this article, Dr. Houser discusses her plan to prepare students to better to meet the future needs of nursing – laying out her comprehensive plan to achieve those goals.
While there is often excitement and anticipation when discussing the future of nursing, challenges also need to be addressed. Undoubtedly, nurses will remain critical in providing high-quality, patient-centered care in an increasingly complex and rapidly changing healthcare environment.
However, key trends will play a significant role in shaping the future of nursing, including the increasing use of technology, skills, and competencies advancements in the wake of growing demand for nurses, new and renewed focuses on addressing health disparities, and continued challenges brought on by the ongoing nursing shortage. The nursing profession is amid the century’s worst nursing shortage. The call to action is now! Without more nurses, a growing patient population won’t have nurses to care for them.
To prepare students to meet these future nursing challenges, nursing education programs should focus on developing the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to enable graduates to thrive in this dynamic and evolving field. Some strategies nursing programs can use to achieve this include:
1. Incorporating technology into nursing education: Nursing students should be exposed to the latest technological advances in nursing and healthcare, including electronic health records, telemedicine, and remote patient monitoring devices.
2. Providing interprofessional education and collaboration opportunities: Nursing students should have the chance to work alongside other healthcare professionals, such as physicians, pharmacists, and social workers. These interprofessional collaborations can help nurses better understand the collaborative nature of healthcare delivery.
3. Encouraging lifelong learning and professional development: Nursing programs should promote a culture of lifelong learning and provide ongoing opportunities for currently enrolled students and former program graduates to enhance their knowledge and skills in the field.
4. Emphasizing cultural competency and addressing health disparities: Nursing students should be prepared to work with patients from diverse backgrounds and understand how to provide culturally sensitive care.
5. Promoting leadership development: Nursing programs should provide opportunities for students to develop leadership skills and prepare them to take on leadership roles in healthcare organizations.
Preparing nursing students to meet the industry’s challenges requires a collaborative effort from educators, healthcare providers, policymakers, and other stakeholders. By working together, we can ensure that nursing graduates are well-equipped to meet the demands of the future of nursing and continue to make a significant contribution to the health and well-being of individuals and communities.
Whether you’re a currently practicing registered nurse looking to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, a soon-to-be high school graduate interested in the nursing profession, or ready to take the next step into
Advanced Practice Nursing or Nurse Education, UP has a substantial collection of nursing programs to help you achieve your goals. Visit our nursing program page to learn more.