Thursday, February 11, 2021
a nurse hand holding a hand of a patient

The Iowa Online Nurse Residency Program is excited to announce the customization of our online program to meet the needs of new graduate nurses beginning their career pathway in non-acute care settings such as long-term care, assisted living, and home care.
How will this long-term care cohort work? The structure and delivery of the program will remain the same using a combination of online modules, independent reflective journaling, and monthly cohort discussion via virtual learning platforms. Onsite support will continue to play a role in mentoring the new nurse throughout the first year of practice and participants will have the opportunity to complete a residency project.
Three major changes include curriculum customization, cohort facilitation by gerontologic experts actively working in the non-acute setting, and the addition of resiliency training. Participants of the new cohort will consume many of the same modules of the established curriculum when it comes to critical thinking, communication & teamwork, managing care delivery, and delivering safe care. Also, geriatric-specific content has been added focusing on the 4-M's framework for age-friendly care including What Matters Most, Dementia, Delirium, Depression, and Mobility. The combination of existing modules that already included long-term and home care scenarios with the newly added geriatric content will provide a great foundation for a tailored discussion focusing on how the competencies are applied in a non-acute care setting. The cohort will be co-facilitated by our Program Manager Nicole Weathers MSN, RN, and Kim Bergan-Jackson, Ph.D., RN-BC, LNHA, Administrator of Oaknoll Retirement Residence, and adjunct faculty for UI College of Nursing. The combination of Nicole’s expertise with online residency facilitation and Kim’s extensive experience in post-acute care and gerontological nursing will provide exponential value to new graduate nurses and their employers throughout their transition into practice.

Resiliency training in which participants will begin to integrate practices into their every day is vital for the nursing workforce faced with front-line pandemic aftereffects. While burnout, compassion fatigue, and moral distress have always been present in nursing, the past year has drawn even more attention to the importance of having a resilient workforce. As nurse leaders, we must find opportunities to begin building these skills from day 1 and that can be done by incorporating this important training into residency programs. The comprehensive resiliency curriculum provided by The Resiliency Solution will focus on skills related to self-awareness, self-regulation, connection, and optimism fostering a culture to encourage new nurses to take care of themselves, so they can continue caring for others.

These enhancements were made possible by funding from a Registered Apprenticeship Grant from the Future Ready Iowa Employer Innovation Fund on behalf of Iowa Workforce Development. The program is excited to pilot our long-term care cohort in late February of 2021. There is still time to register. Please visit the CURRICULUM OVERVIEW page to view the long term care CE brochure. Interested employers should contact for more information or set-up a time to visit 1:1, to learn more. 

Nicole Weathers, Program Manager, IONRP