“Initially, the students enrolled in the DNP program will be employed as advanced practice nurses in hospitals, clinics and other outpatient settings,” says Michelle Ficca, chair of the university’s nursing department. “The long-term advantage to the employer is to have an advanced practice nurse who is not only clinically competent but is well versed in research, health policy and patient advocacy and has excellent leadership skills.”
Similar DNP programs will be offered by West Chester University and jointly by Clarion and Edinboro universities each with a different focus to address needs. The trio of programs will help address the declining availability of physicians, especially in primary care specialties, and the need for improved quality of care and patient safety.
The program will be open to advanced practice nurses — nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists, clinical nurse specialists and nurse midwives — who want to build on their master’s degree in nursing.
“The program is online, so it is conducive to the working advanced practice nurse,” Ficca says.
Bloomsburg offers an array of undergraduate and graduate programs in nursing, including a Master of Science in Nursing degree that enables students to take national certification exams in three different advanced practice roles – adult health clinical nurse specialist, adult/gerontology and family nurse practitioner, and nurse anesthesia. •