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Thread: Nurses answer the call during SSM phone-a-thon

  1. #1
    Senior Member Max's Avatar
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    Nurses answer the call during SSM phone-a-thon

    Nurses answer the call during SSM phone-a-thon
    Margaret Jackson
    SSM Rehab filled 75 percent of the 15 nursing positions it had open through a Nursing Phone-a-Thon last month.

    "We had a total of 93 calls over a four-hour period," said Kurt Delabar, SSM Rehab's director of human resources. "The only reason we didn't have more was because that's all our phones could handle."

    The phone-a-thon was part of SSM Rehab's strategy to recruit nurses - a task that has become increasingly difficult in recent years.

    SSM Rehab is a comprehensive inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation provider and is the only not-for-profit acute rehabilitation hospital in the St. Louis metropolitan area. SSM Rehab specializes in the rehabilitation of brain/head injuries, spinal cord injuries, stroke, amputation, orthopedic injury and neurological disorders, as well as many other rehab-related diagnoses.

    Other programs the organization has implemented to attract nurses during a nationwide shortage include enhancing its employee referral program and building relationships with nursing schools.

    "We have some individuals who are teaching or guest lecturing about rehab and the human resources side of health care," Delabar said.

    SSM Rehab also has enhanced its overall benefits package to include an aggressive tuition reimbursement program. Eligible students can receive $4,160 for tuition or to help repay existing student loans.

    SSM Rehab also offers a signing bonus that ranges from $3,750 for part-time employees to $7,500 for full-time positions.

    Earlier this year, the St. Louis-based Catholic Health Association of the United States sponsored a competition aimed at finding solutions to the nursing shortage. Elaine Hlopick, a registered nurse at Saint Vincent Health Center in Erie, Pa., was awarded a $10,000 check for her winning entry. Hlopick's solution includes a national ministry-wide effort to celebrate the contribution of nurses and the development of facility-level nursing advocacy offices that would promote nurses' accomplishments and identify and deal with any problems or concerns.

    While there's been a shortage of nurses to fill positions, there appears to be a bright spot on the horizon. The Barnes College of Nursing and Health Studies at the University of Missouri-St. Louis saw nursing enrollment jump more than 10 percent this year to 432 undergraduate students, compared to 388 last fall.

    "We're already seeing an increase in the applications for spring semester above and beyond what we had at this same time last year," said Connie Koch, interim dean of Barnes College.

    The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts there will be about 1 million new job openings for registered nurses by 2010, and the demand for nurses is likely to remain strong until at least 2020.

    "That, combined with the current recession and shortage of other professional positions, has been a major factor in our increased enrollment," Koch said. "Students also have indicated that the events of 9/11 made them more aware of the service sector."

    Among the solutions Barnes College is pursuing is working with grade-school and middle-school age children to educate them about careers in nursing, Koch said.

    "For a long-term solution, it's best to work with schools to educate individuals at a younger age," Koch said. "Most traditional nursing programs have started the recruitment process for young adults to go into the profession in high school. That's really too late."

    mjackson@bizjournals.com



    © 2002 American City Business Journals Inc.

    ==============================
    "Those who seek to predict the future... might first look to the past. The past is a mirror -- and those who ignore its sometimes dark reflection, are doomed to repeat it... Will it be those seeking redemption who shall decide the future... or will those driven only by greed and envy shape our destiny? Even a hundred years later, the outcome is still very much in doubt. .." Outer Limits(Heart's Desire)



  2. #2
    Thanks for sharing that. I will forward it to our nursing colleagues. PLG

  3. #3
    Senior Member Max's Avatar
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    You always welcome

    Sci-nurse

    ==============================
    "Those who seek to predict the future... might first look to the past. The past is a mirror -- and those who ignore its sometimes dark reflection, are doomed to repeat it... Will it be those seeking redemption who shall decide the future... or will those driven only by greed and envy shape our destiny? Even a hundred years later, the outcome is still very much in doubt. .." Outer Limits(Heart's Desire)



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