The Belmont University School of Nursing hosted nursing faculty and hospital educators for a special training conference in hands-on simulation Oct. 9-11. The First Annual Simulation Conference: Empowering Nurse Educators in Tennessee was sponsored by a grant from Partners Investing in Nursing’s Future (PIN), a national initiative to address the nation’s nursing shortage. The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee and The Tennessee Center for Nursing also partnered with Belmont to create the conference.
Dr. Debra Wollaber, Belmont professor of nursing, said, “We know that nursing faculty and hospital staff educators need more hands-on training. Through this grant, we are able to provide training that is vital to educators, allowing them to use available technology to its fullest capacity.”
The conference training ranged from using technology in clinical settings to critical care, including simulation exercises with life-like mannequins that could talk, cough and sneeze. The simulation conference was an important strategy for one of PIN’s main goals, which is to increase the supply of qualified nurse educators and enhance the skills of current faculty to meet the current needs.
The Health Resources and Services Administration predicts that Tennessee will only be able to meet half of the demand for RNs by 2020, and the U.S. Government projects a shortfall of 800,000 nurses in the country by the same year.