February 13, 2012

New nursing program promises to advance patient care quality

The Helene Fuld Health Trust of New York has awarded a grant to the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing to support the Helene Fuld Leadership Program for the Advancement of Patient Care Quality and Safety. The program will prepare 200 new clinical nurses over the next five years. The Fuld Leadership Program is designed to give Fuld Fellows a solid clinical foundation in quality improvement and patient safety that is firmly grounded in leadership development.

The program will focus on older citizens, who represent the majority of hospitalized patients.

The initiative builds on the strengths of the School of Nursing, The Johns Hopkins Hospital and the new Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality to support the training of clinical nurses as leaders in the promotion of patient care quality and safety. The program extends the success of previous Fuld leadership programs at the School of Nursing that continue to distinguish Johns Hopkins as a pioneer in patient care safety and quality improvement.

Fuld Fellows in Patient Care Quality and Safety will benefit from the advantages of interprofessional education provided by the nation’s top-ranked hospital and schools of Nursing, Medicine and Public Health, and will participate in the highest quality health education, research and patient care delivery.
“The Fuld Leadership Program will transform the school’s ability to prepare future clinical nursing leaders with strong competencies in quality and safety,” said Martha N. Hill, dean of the School of Nursing. “In addition, the program will help strengthen nursing education nationwide by offering an exemplary academic approach to building competencies in quality and safety that can be replicated or adapted at other leading institutions.”

The new program reflects the recommendation of the 2010 Institute of Medicine report The Future of Nursing, which calls for increased nurse leadership to help reduce health care errors and improve quality of care.

Cheryl R. Dennison Himmelfarb, an associate professor in the Department of Health Systems and Outcomes, has been named director of the program. Dennison Himmelfarb will work closely with three program leaders and three faculty mentors to guide fellows through their course of study and engage resources across the institution. Mentors will be drawn from the School of Nursing, The Johns Hopkins Hospital and the Armstrong Institute.

Dennison Himmelfarb said, “Fuld Fellows will benefit from training and intensive, applied experiences in clinical environments that provide an enduring foundation for continued excellence in advancing quality and safety throughout their careers. They will graduate with special competencies that distinguish them among their clinical colleagues.”