Hospitals get $200M to train advanced practice RNs

To expand the primary care workforce, five U.S. hospitals will share in $200 million to train advanced practice registered nursing (APRN) students, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced yesterday.

The agency selected the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia; Duke University Hospital in Durham, N.C.; Scottsdale (Ariz.) Healthcare Medical Center; Rush University Medical Center in Chicago; and Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center Hospital in Houston to participate in the four-year project.

With a looming workforce shortage and growing demand for care, the demonstration project, established through the health reform law, will help hospitals foot the bill for training clinical nurse specialists, nurse practitioners, certified registered nurse anesthetists and certified nurse-midwives.

In particular, these APRNs will learn to deliver primary care, preventive care, transitional care and chronic care management services, CMS said.

CMS will reimburse hospitals on a per-student basis, with payments tied to the number of additional APRNs trained due to participation, according to the demonstration's website.

Nonphysician providers have been on CMS' radar recently, particularly with the final rule to the Conditions of Participation the agency released in May. The updated rule gave advanced practice nurses, physician assistants and pharmacists more authority to perform duties that they are trained for and allowed to do within their scope of practice and state law.

To learn more:
- here's the CMS announcement
- check out the nurse education program

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