Sarah Bush Lincoln earned ANCC Practice Transition Accreditation Program® (PTAP) accreditation for its nurse residency program recently. A PTAP-accredited nurse residency program showcases a proven record of innovation, support for new nurses, process improvement, and an evidence-based adherence to national standards.
Sarah Bush Lincoln hosts two classes a year – one in both January and June. The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) has confirmed that SBL has a top program by bestowing this designation just five years after the residency program was implemented. Sarah Bush Lincoln is one of only 208 U.S. hospitals to earn this accreditation.
“Our new nurses are more savvy now, which is important to our organization and patients. They have the tools to more easily assume their new roles and work in the departments that they want. This accreditation tells new nurses that they are going to get the training and support they need when they come to Sarah Bush Lincoln,” Lorenzo Smith, Employee and Organizational Development director, said.
In the past few years, additional steps to strengthen the program were taken. Jan Waymoth, RN, clinical education manager, met with nursing leaders to develop a relevant and enticing curriculum. She explained that many hospitals purchase existing nursing residency program education materials, but Sarah Bush Lincoln nursing leadership elected to develop its own in-house instruction.
Ultimately, the nursing leadership decided to use a hands-on approach and tailor the education to each resident’s needs. The residents work with a preceptor to ensure they are transitioning well from nursing school into the professional roles of nursing.
“Nursing is hands-on, so it makes sense that the curriculum would be, too. For instance, a resident came to me and said he would appreciate more practice doing IVs. We moved him to the surgery department for the day, where he performed many IVs and felt more confident afterwards,” Waymoth explained.
After orientation, the nurse residents attend a four-hour seminar once a month for a year. Experts visit with nurse residents to speak about topics like legal nursing issues, communication, stress management, time management, and safety. Nurse residents participate in simulations where they practice transitioning a patient from one department to another with a mannequin, all the while using lifts, answering their phone regarding other “patients,” and conducting skin checks.
“Trial and error has been the best method for us to determine what is ideal for the nurse residents. We have tried lectures and going virtual, but actually practicing scenarios and teaching information that smooths out the day-to-day nursing works best. We are constantly asking them for feedback to improve our program,” Waymoth stated.
During the first month onboarding, Nurse residents additionally complete a rotation in departments other than their own, such as the SBL Regional Cancer Center or the Emergency Department. Applicants to the program must be graduating or have graduated from an accredited nursing program and have less than 12 months of relevant experience. The next class will begin in January 2022.
“The ANCC commended us for applying during the pandemic while many other hospitals had elected to wait. We considered temporarily closing the program down for a while, but now is when nurses need the most support,” Waymoth insisted. Sarah Bush Lincoln was one of only two nurse residency programs to earn ANCC accreditation this year.
For more information about the nurse residency program, call Human Resources at 217 258-2501.