HCA Healthcare’s recent acquisition of Galen College of Nursing represents a special symbiosis of leading institutions in their respective fields. The winners are the patients, as well as Galen’s students and HCA Healthcare nurses who are looking to further their careers by way of new educational opportunities.
“Galen’s mission has always been focused on expanding access to quality nursing education,” says Mark. “Quality is a given. There is no other option but excellence when it comes to nursing education.”
The reality of the nursing field today is that traditional programs, or existing programs, may not be capable of building to the scale necessary to address both current and anticipated nursing shortages.
“With Galen now being part of the HCA Healthcare family, we have formed the largest academic-practice partnership in healthcare,” says Mark. “There simply aren’t enough nursing programs to fill what is a steadily growing need, only intensified from the stressors being put on the country’s healthcare systems with the pandemic, and nurses bearing an immeasurable brunt of the impact.”
Jane says the Galen acquisition was “specifically designed to bring quality education to our HCA Healthcare colleagues, both those who want to be nurses and those who already are.
“Combined with the HCA Healthcare tuition reimbursement program, education becomes accessible to all,” she says. “For those who are already RNs, the Galen-HCA Healthcare grant is a way to complete a Bachelor of Science in nursing with very little out-of-pocket expense, and a master’s of nursing with a focus on leadership that was co-designed by Galen and HCA Healthcare.”
The new nursing landscape will invariably be impacted greatly by a pandemic that still hovers over our healthcare system, creating a lingering uncertainty. What is certain is that nurses will continue to courageously provide frontline care.
“For our current nurses, we are so appreciative of the tremendous work they do, especially the heroic actions of so many during this pandemic,” says Jane. “Our expectation now is that these colleagues pay special attention to their own well-being, that they recharge their batteries and consciously rewire their hearts and minds to prepare for life in an environment with ‘smoldering’ COVID-19.
We will never be the same. Our profession has been forever changed. So, what is our new normal? We need nurses to define the future of patient care.”