Methodist Hospital has been selected as one of six hospitals nationally to be a pilot site for a multigenerational nurse residency program in geropalliative care called AgeWISE.
The program, which focuses on care to frail older adults who are nearing the last 2 – 5 years of life, pairs junior nurses with more experienced nurse colleagues who serve as preceptors. Together, the paired nurses engage in classroom learning and clinical practice to learn current evidence-based geriatric and palliative care nursing knowledge and then integrate that knowledge into their practice setting.
To be considered as a potential pilot site, hospitals had to hold both Magnet and NICHE (Nurses Improving Care to Healthsystem Elders) designations and be strongly affiliated with a college of nursing. Site director Fran Henton. Ph.D., R.N., professor of nursing at Nebraska Methodist College-The Josie Harper Campus will facilitate the classroom learning.
“Estimates show that one in five Americans will be age 65 or older by the year 2030,” said Deborah Conley, MSN, APRN-CNS, GCNS-BC, FNGNA , clinical nurse specialist and AgeWISE site coordinator, Methodist Hospital. “Educating our nursing staff to care for this aging population is critical; however, it is a daunting task. The AgeWISE nurse residency program is an excellent approach.”
Championed for the past three years at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, more experienced nurses reported being transformed by the experience of the AgeWISE program, and as a result, planned to postpone their retirements. Less experienced nurses noted a new appreciation for older persons and enhanced life-efficacy in recognizing and intervening in end-of-life situations. Both groups of nurses shared a common commitment to improving care to older adults on their units, which now much up nearly 50 percent of all hospital admissions.
“Geropalliative care is aligned with nursing’s core values of alleviating suffering and enhancing well-being,” Conley said. “We also focus on care that is meaningful and congruent with older adults’ values and preferences.”
The other five pilot sites are: NYU Langone Medical Center, New York, N.Y.; St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center, Paterson, N.J.; Sanford USD Medical Center, Sioux Falls, S.D.; UH Case Medical Center, Cleveland, Ohio; and, URMC’s Strong Memorial Hospital, Rochester, N.Y.
An affiliate of Methodist Health System, Methodist Hospital is a not-for-profit,
430-bed acute care hospital serving the metropolitan-Omaha area.
Methodist Hospital has a 120-year tradition of providing