Thursday, October 14, 2010

Loyola Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing Awarded Grant

Grant to Help Prepare Leaders in Quality, Safety and Health-Care Technology

MAYWOOD, Ill. -- Loyola University Chicago Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing recently received a three-year, $891,212 Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Advanced Education Nursing grant for the development of a new track within the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program. This track, Health-Care Quality Using Education in Safety and Technology (H-QUEST), allows students to select a focus in outcome management, quality, safety or health-care informatics. The program is designed to prepare leaders who will shape the health-care systems of the future.

“As health care becomes more complex, nurses increasingly will be asked to use information technology to drive quality initiatives that produce positive outcomes,” said Vicki Keough, PhD, RN-BC, ACNP, dean, MNSON. “This grant will allow us to educate nurses to enhance patient-safety programs with data that support the highest quality of care.”

Ida Androwich, PhD, RN, FAAN, is the project director and Sheila Haas, PhD, RN, FAAN, is the co-project director for the H-QUEST program. Both are professors in nursing and business at Loyola University Chicago. This new track within the DNP program builds on the school’s existing online master’s degree in Health Systems Management, which has educated nursing leaders across the country. Students from diverse backgrounds and geographic locations will participate in online coursework and on-campus immersion experiences.

“The H-QUEST track will educate nurses to lead in the design, implementation and evaluation of evidence-based care and patient-safety practices in a complex, rapidly changing health-care environment,” Dr. Androwich said. “Graduates of the program will be well-positioned for roles that require multidisciplinary collaboration, critical analysis of systems and outcomes, and the creation of key improvements in health-care delivery.”

Loyola University Chicago introduced the DNP degree for advanced-practice nursing students last year. While PhD nursing programs focus on original research, DNP programs prepare students to lead at the highest level of nursing practice and work in an interprofessional team doing translational research. This includes proficiencies in areas that support clinical practice, such as administration, organizational management and policy. DNP graduates also are skilled in assessing evidence, translating research and implementing evidence-based clinical innovations to improve care quality and safety.

“Advanced practice nursing education continues to be an area that sets Loyola University Chicago graduates apart,” Dean Keough said. “The H-QUEST track will further distinguish our alumni as leaders in the health-care setting.”

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About Loyola University Health System

Loyola University Health System (LUHS) is part of Trinity Health. Based in the western suburbs of Chicago, LUHS is a quaternary care system with a 61-acre main medical center campus, the 36-acre Gottlieb Memorial Hospital campus and more than 30 primary and specialty care facilities in Cook, Will and DuPage counties. Loyola University Medical Center’s campus is conveniently located in Maywood, 13 miles west of Chicago’s Loop and 8 miles east of Oak Brook, Ill. At the heart of the medical center campus is a 559-licensed-bed hospital that houses a Level 1 Trauma Center, a Burn Center and the Ronald McDonald® Children's Hospital of Loyola University Medical Center. Also on campus are the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, Loyola Outpatient Center, Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine and Loyola Oral Health Center as well as Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, Loyola University Chicago Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing and the Loyola Center for Fitness. Loyola's Gottlieb campus in Melrose Park includes the 255-licensed-bed community hospital, the Professional Office Building housing 150 private practice clinics, the Adult Day Care, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park.

Trinity Health is a national Catholic health system with an enduring legacy and a steadfast mission to be a transforming and healing presence within the communities we serve. Trinity is committed to being a people-centered health care system that enables better health, better care and lower costs. Trinity Health has 88 hospitals and hundreds of continuing care facilities, home care agencies and outpatient centers in 21 states and 119,000 employees.