LAC holds second regional forum


At a forum hosted by the Louisiana Action Coalition on March 12 in Pineville, LA, local nurses, nursing students, nurse educators, and nurse champions gathered to discuss nursing’s role in the future of health care in Louisiana.

Approximately 100 participants attended the program, “The Future of Nursing in Central Louisiana,” which included presentations about the Future of Nursing Campaign for Action and Louisiana’s nursing workforce. A panel discussion about nursing workforce issues and their effects on patient care followed the workforce presentation. Panelists included a member of nursing faculty, a hospital administrator, a local policy maker, and a health care consumer.

Afternoon breakout groups discussed nursing education, leadership and practice. The groups came back together at the end of the forum to report on the discussions.

Kimberly Sharp, PhD, RN and dean of Nursing & Allied Health at Louisiana College, gave the report for the education breakout group. “We need to provide a more active learning environment for our nursing students,” said Sharp. “And we need educational collaboration and innovation. It’s really about making sure we give better care to our patients.”

“Honesty, flexibility and communication” are words that describe good nurse leaders according to the leadership breakout group. “The leader sets the tone for the facility,” said Rhonda Smith, RN, scribe for the group.

This was the second of five regional forums being hosted across the state by the Louisiana Action Coalition.

“We know that the demand for healthcare is unique to each region, and the strategies used to implement the IOM recommendations on the future of nursing will be different from region to region,” said Cynthia Bienemy, PhD, RN and Louisiana Action Coalition co-lead. “This forum was about getting the conversation going in central Louisiana, and we definitely succeeded in doing that.”

The next forum hosted by the Louisiana Action Coalition, “The Future of Nursing in Southeast Louisiana,” will be held in Kenner on April 16, 2014.

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The Campaign for Action is working on both the national level and in every state, engaging with consumers, nurses, other clinicians, insurers, health care systems, employers, educators, funders, and public policy makers—all the stakeholders who need to be involved in system change.

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Baton Rouge, LA 70802

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