Meeting the Future of Nursing Report™ Recommendations

A Successful Practice-Academic Partnership

Cindy Stout, DNP, RN, NEA, BC; Nancy Short, DrPH, MBA, RN; Kelly Aldrich, DNP, RN-BC, CCRN-A; R. Jacob Cintron, MBA, MAcc, BSIE, PE; Elias Provencio-Vasquez, PhD, RN, FAAN


Nurs Econ. 2015;33(3):161-166. 

In This Article


Future interventions include expanding the number of interns participating in the program, including the perioperative services for intern placement and expanding the program to other hospitals within the community. Additionally, UTEP would like Del Sol to consider extending the program to include fast-track BSN (second-degree) students. These suggestions are currently under review.

This project's outcomes were presented to all HCA hospital leadership during 2013. Additionally, a similar program is being trialed with the St. David's hospitals in Austin, TX, and discussions for a trial are underway with the Methodist hospitals in San Antonio, TX. A program such as this has the capability to expand into other markets where collaborations exist between universities and HCA facilities.

In light of health care's financial environment and after review of the issue's significance, there was sufficient evidence to support a creative approach to managing FTEs and costs associated with new nurse orientation. Cost-benefit analyses were stated clearly in the literature and supported development and maintenance of residency or internship programs. Other benefits included improved quality such as zero medication errors (Lee, 2009) and improved retention to 100% by the second year (Harrison et al., 2007). A cost-effective, quality-driven strategy such as this RN internship program allowed Del Sol to save money in its largest operating line items (salaries, benefits, FTEs, and recruitment fees), as well as increase the number of BSN nurses, and improve satisfaction for nurse interns and preceptors. A program such as this may change the way hospitals and universities partner together in the future. As partners, Del Sol Medical Center and the University of Texas at El Paso School of Nursing are committed to the continued, long-term success of the program.