UMass Boston officers shall be utilizing $3 million in federal funding to create a “state-of-the-art” house care digital and simulation lab, a step they are saying is crucial to getting ready nursing college students for the evolving world of well being care.
The lab will broaden the college’s Center for Clinical Education and Research, educating college students on house care and telemedicine. There shall be particular emphasis on sufferers who’re ageing, disabled or have skilled well being disparities, officers mentioned throughout a Thursday information convention.
“Health care is really changing so we need to create simulation spaces, practical experiences that give students an opportunity,” Provost Joseph Berger mentioned. “It’s going to allow us to create state-of-the-art technology that represents the expansion of health care, out of traditional hospital settings and into virtual spaces.”
U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch secured the funding on this fiscal yr’s $1.7 trillion omnibus appropriations invoice that President Joe Biden signed into regulation in late December. The $3 million award for UMass Boston follows $1.35 million that Lynch obtained final yr the college utilized in designing plans to broaden its whole footprint.
Planning for the brand new house care lab will begin pretty quickly, however the total undertaking timeline must be ironed out, mentioned Bo Fernall, dean of the Robert and Donna Manning College of Nursing and Health Sciences. It is protected to imagine the brand new lab won’t be accessible subsequent faculty yr, he mentioned.
“It’s very complicated to bring all of this technology into one space and make sure that it works and we’re up and running,” Fernhall mentioned. “Then we need to train our instructors to be able to use it appropriately to educate our students.”
Lynch pointed to what he calls a “crisis in health care,” spurred by the impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic and associated pressures placed on frontline staff, hospital employees and nurses.
Roughly 19,000 nursing positions have been unfilled throughout the state as of late 2022, in line with an October survey from the Massachusetts Health and Hospital Association. Earlier this month, the Massachusetts School Nurse Organization discovered that the 300 almost job postings for varsity nurse positions accounted for greater than 10% of all faculty nurses within the state.
“There seems to be an exodus of a lot of professionals who have said ‘OK, I’m at this point of my career, and I’m going to leave the profession,’” Lynch mentioned. “We have such demand for nurses in this area.”
Students stay fascinated about pursuing nursing careers regardless of the pandemic-related hardships.
There are roughly 1,400 college students enrolled in UMass Boston’s nursing program out of the college’s complete enrollment of roughly 15,000 college students.
“The interest is huge,” Fernhall mentioned. “The question is can we accommodate that interest? What we need to do is create a situation where we can accept more students and help students successfully graduate and become highly-skilled nurses to help patients.”