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Voice of State’s Nursing Workforce Marks 20th Anniversary

This year, the New Jersey Collaborative Center for Nursing (NJCCN) is celebrating its 20th anniversary of innovating on behalf of the state’s nursing workforce.

“Giving voice to nursing workplace solutions is an absolutely vital role, and we’re delighted to mark two full decades taking on this challenge,” said Dr. Edna Cadmus, PhD, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN, executive director of NJCCN. “It’s amazing to ponder everything we’ve accomplished since our establishment in 2002 … and then to consider how much more remains to be done.”

The NJCCN is currently engaged in implementing the National Academy of Medicine’s recommendations for the Future of Nursing Report 2020-2030; publishing research on the scope of practice for New Jersey’s LPNs; and, in conjunction with 21 New Jersey hospitals, implementing as well as evaluating an Acute Care Nurse Residency Program that’s partially funded by the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development. And that’s only a sampling of the organization’s current efforts.

Cadmus adds: “The issues confronting New Jersey’s nursing workforce are varied and complex, so the solutions we develop need to be multi-faceted. That’s why our plans for the future don’t fit neatly into a single specific category. From gathering and analyzing supply and demand data, to educating, guiding, and improving the health and well-being of nurses, there’s much we intend to accomplish through our advocacy efforts.”

Among the organization’s essential, current goals that will continue to be emphasized are:

  • Increasing the number of nursing graduates by increasing the number of nursing faculty
  • Ensuring that nurses work to the top of their licenses
  • Improving access to care for all New Jersey’s residents

Of course, a 20th anniversary celebration also is about history – and it would be nearly impossible to list everything the NJCCN has achieved since it was established by an act of the State Legislature in 2002.

Highlights from the past include development of the Integrated, Competency-Based Nursing Practice Model (2004); the “Preventing NJ’s Impending Healthcare Crisis” (2006) and “Situation Critical: Closing the Nurse Supply Gap in NJ” (2009) reports to the governor; conducting the “Culture of Health Summit” with various trade organizations, academic and practice partners, and nursing organizations (2015); publishing and disseminating the “21st Century School Nurse Leadership, Moving Evidence into Action” toolkit to all the state’s school nurses (2018); and assessing the workforce and educational providers through an ongoing series of annual reports on HHAs, LPNs, RNs, APNs, and schools.

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