Photo: Illustration of nurses. Manatee Community Foundation, Suncoast Nursing Action Coalition, and Community Foundation of Sarasota County logos.

Celebrating and Supporting Nurses for Better Healthcare Outcomes

Posted on January 19, 2021 by Deborah Gauvreau, consultant with The Patterson Foundation

The Manatee Community Foundation, Community Foundation of Sarasota County, and Suncoast Nursing Action Coalition (SNAC) had a community discussion about the impact of nursing in our communities. (Where would we be without our nurses?) 

SNAC assembled a panel of some of its most experienced leaders representing healthcare institutions, nursing education, and the community. The panel additionally included SNAC’s Nurse Education Navigator. Each panelist discussed their perspectives regarding the importance of nurses achieving a baccalaureate and higher degree as well as the need for community support:
  • Jan Mauck | Former Chief Nursing Officer, Sarasota Memorial Healthcare System and Co-Founder of SNAC
  • Dr. Carol Probstfeld | President, State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota
  • Dr. Pam Beitlich, ED | Women's and Children's Services,
    Sarasota Memorial Hospital
  • Kate Garber | Nurse Education Navigator, Suncoast Nursing Action Coalition
  • Dr. LaVerne Green | Retired Captain Public Health Service Nurse Officer
  • Charles Bauman | Of counsel, Kerkering Barberio & Co., Certified Public Accountant, Co-Founder of SNAC
What was clear from the presentation is supporting high-quality nurse education can improve health outcomes.

Why? Decades of research shows that patient care outcomes improve with more Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degreed nurses in hospitals. Here are some key points:

1. Florida has the lowest National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) scores for the last three years in the nation. Florida has more than 350 nursing programs, far more schools than other states, and many of the schools in Florida are not accredited by high-quality accrediting organizations. Florida’s NCLEX pass rate is 72.4%. Nationally, 88.3% pass the exam. We need nursing education programs that are high quality, not just more programs.

2. The best data shows that Florida has 41% BSN’s; our region has about 33.5% BSN’s. This is important because the National Academy of Medicine recommends 80% of nurses hold a BSN. 

3. Over the past eight years, SNAC has contributed to adding six high-quality accredited BSN nursing programs to this region. SNAC’s scholarship program for BSN’s and doctoral level nurses has awarded almost $500,000 to advance quality nursing. SNAC’s Nurse Education Navigator helps students find schools with the right fit so each can have transferrable course credits to higher nursing degree programs in the future.

4. The Manatee Community Foundation, the Community Foundation of Sarasota County, and SNAC are connections for your philanthropic community support for nurses.

For more information:

The Patterson Foundation has supported SNAC since 2013. Learn more.

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