New degree to boost nurse numbers
The University of Adelaide will help meet the challenge of bolstering nurse levels by offering a three-year Bachelor of Nursing program from next year.
Vice-Chancellor Professor James McWha said the University's Department of Clinical Nursing, in collaboration with key industry partners, would deliver the program.
"The new program will produce nursing graduates who are well prepared - both academically and clinically - at a critical time in terms of the current and projected shortage of nurses," he said.
"Another of the significant strong points of our program is the substantial amount of time dedicated to practical learning. It is higher than most traditional Australian undergraduate nursing programs.
"It also allows us to strengthen our relationship with the Royal Adelaide Hospital."
The Department of Clinical Nursing was established in 1995 on the initiative of the Royal Adelaide Hospital. The interaction between the Department and the Hospital, facilitated by geographical proximity, produces a synergistic relationship between an academic department of nursing and a provider of nursing services.
Students will work in the clinical area as full members of the health care team, and additional clinical support and clinical lecturers will provide supervision.
Clinical placement will be undertaken at the Royal Adelaide Hospital (North Terrace and Glenside Campuses and Hampstead); Lyell McEwin Hospital; Queen Elizabeth Hospital; Women's and Children's Hospital; Port Pirie Regional Health Service; Royal District Nursing Service and a group of residential care facilities.
The key features of the Bachelor of Nursing program, which will be introduced within the established and respected Faculty of Health Sciences, are:
- emphasis on health care as a dynamic and ever-changing system;
- focus on practice;
- reliance on experiential learning;
- integration of theory and practice;
- philosophy of person-centred nursing;
- increasing emphasis on health, health promotion and primary care-led health services;
- preparation for evidence-based practice;
- emphasis on developing team-working skills;
- industry involvement;
- interdisciplinary learning; and
- information technology literacy.
For the past 10 years, the University's Department of Clinical Nursing has been offering successful postgraduate specialist programs. The success of these programs has assisted in the development of the Bachelor of Nursing program.
Story by Howard Salkow