Thursday, May 7, 2015

MDI Hospital Launches CNA Program

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MDI Hospital nursing education coordinator Betsy Corrigan, MSN, RN, believes that clinical nurse educators are change agents, working to engage nurses in the use of evidenced-based best practices to improve patient, family and community outcomes.

Graduates of the hospital’s first Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) Program will take this message with them as they begin their healthcare careers. The new certification program, offered in cooperation with the MDI Adult Education, provides hands-on clinical education in long-term care and hospital settings. Participants in the 13-week CNA course are set to take their CNA exam on May 5. Curriculum for the new clinical education program includes CPR, first aid and emergency response, human anatomy and physiology, medical procedures and protocols, documentation and reporting, medical terminology and patient safety. “The curriculum went above and beyond the minimum required,” said student Meredith Brewer. “It truly was one of the best decisions I ever made.  Our area needs CNAs!”

First time program instructors Ellen Beauchaine, BSN, RN, and Cara Pinkham, RN found the experience very valuable as well. “It has made me a better educator and nurse,” said Beauchaine, “I feel that by being part of this program I am reaching out and touching the future of healthcare.” CNAs are an integral part of the care team, agree both Pinkham and Beauchaine.  “I have taken great pride in leading this new group of students.  It reminded me of the team effort needed to care for all patients and their families. We are all integral to the healing process,” said Pinkham.

In order to provide their students with the best possible learning experience, the instructors focused on providing individualized teaching styles while emphasizing the importance of the team dynamic in healthcare today. “Since each student learns differently, I made sure to individualize their clinical experiences to their different learning styles,” said Beauchaine.

Students enrolled in the inaugural program have been very enthusiastic about their instructors and their experience. “They have taught me how healthcare is really a team effort and how important everyone in the process is,” said program participant Marc Jaffrey. For many of the students, the program is the first step toward achieving their long term nursing goals. “It has made me a lot more confident in going forward with my career in helping others. It also has put my foot in the door to become an RN,” said CNA student Jennifer Norwood.

For more information on the CNA program please contact Betsy Corrigan MSN, RN at 288-5082 ext: 1204 or