Children’s has developed a program to assist new nurse graduates in their transition from student to professional RN with the knowledge, skills and experience needed to begin a successful career in pediatric nursing. Once a home unit is selected, the resident continues with unit-specific orientation, gaining confidence and competence. In year two, nurse residents complete an evidence-based practice project of their choice. The program will culminate in eligibility for national certification as a pediatric nurse.
The program is highly supportive, with sequential learning experiences including didactic classroom lectures, structured computer-based learning, case studies, and clinical experiences incorporating simulations and hands-on technical skill development.
Rotational clinical experiences in the pediatric units are designed to give the new graduate exposure to the patient demographic, unit environment and healthcare professional team in each area.
Phase I: Nurse Residents attend 12 hours of class per week to learn the essentials of pediatric nursing including family centered care, pediatric growth and development; pathophysiology and nursing care for common conditions; and professionalism topics. Additional time is spent each week rotating through different units. The purpose is for the resident to identify what location is the best fit for their future practice. The units also identify what residents are the best fit for their team. Pediatric nursing skills are developed during these rotations as well.
Phase II: After Match Day, nurse residents begin unit-specific orientation. Specialty pediatric nursing skills are developed with the goal of the resident becoming competent and confident in their nursing practice. Throughout this phase, the nurse resident cohort convenes regularly to discuss education topics and coping skills as they transition to this new level of professionalism.
During year two, the residents complete an evidence-based practice project on the topic of their choice and presented to their cohort and unit leaders. Many of these projects are implemented and have made an impact on the quality of care provided to our patients.