How Penn Medicine connects new nurses to home care

New nurses are an "untapped" resource for home care, according to Danielle Flynn, MSN, the director of Philadelphia-based Penn Medicine Home Health.

That realization prompted the formation of a nurse residency program at Penn Medicine that partners new nurses with a senior preceptor home care nurse over the course of multiple months, according to a Sept. 12 Penn Medicine News blog post.

"This program is about recruiting new nurses into a specialty area of practice that was traditionally held for later-career nurses. We needed to be creative to adapt to increasing demands in at-home care and responsive to a national trend of an aging workforce," Ms.Flynn stated in the blog post. "But it's also about providing support to new graduates and ensuring that we meet their needs and retain them in what is a growing and specialized field."

Since its formation three years prior, the nurse residency specialty program has attracted more than two dozen nurses. As part of their training, they are taught wound care, phlebotomy, infusion, chronic-disease management, sometimes long before they would have in other settings as a new nurse.

Halfway through the 18 month-long program, nurse residents are required to complete a project that focuses on a key area of their work specialization. From there, they complete an additional nine months of training before graduating. 

"For many early career nurses, this is a giant leap toward what they hoped to do for the rest of their careers, and a chance to learn the craft on the road," the blog states.

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