FISHERS, Ind., Aug. 28 Orbis Education announced todaythat it has implemented its first collaborative educational services solutionin San Diego, California, in conjunction with the University of Oklahoma,Southwestern College, San Diego State University and Sharp HealthCare. Thiscollaboration allows students in San Diego to earn an Accelerated SecondDegree BSN from the University of Oklahoma College of Nursing beginning inAugust 2007.
"California has one of the most serious nursing shortages in the UnitedStates," said Daniel Briggs, CEO of Orbis Education. "We recognized anopportunity to bring nationally award-winning nursing programs and anationally-recognized health care facility together to address the needs ofSan Diego."
This innovative collaboration blends tradition and technology, offeringleading-edge online education and traditional on-site clinical education.Orbis works transparently to manage logistics from the beginning to the end ofthis process, including developing relationships with potential collegeaffiliates, scouting clinical locations, conducting all marketing and publicrelations student recruitment efforts and managing the day-to-day operations.In establishing the new program, Orbis works diligently to meet the higheststandards in education and health care set forth by all affiliates andregulatory bodies.
In San Diego, students without previous healthcare experience and a degreein another field can become a nurse in just 14 months. The theory portion ofthe program is taught completely online by the faculty of OU, and the clinicaleducation component is taught exclusively at Sharp HealthCare facilities byadjunct appointed faculty.
"We are also pleased that hospitals outside San Diego are recognizing thevalue of this innovative approach and are currently looking at implementingthe program with exclusivity in their region," Briggs said. "We areencouraged that more hospitals today are looking for proactive solutionsinstead of treating the shortage as a cost-of-doing business."
According to a recently released PricewaterhouseCoopers' report(1), the"use of temporary nurses is no longer a stop-gap measure but has become a wayof life for many hospitals." Also noted in the report, hospital executives arechallenged by the overhead associated with attracting and retaining qualitynurses. Current efforts to control the nursing shortage are taking awayresources better spent on patient care. With the new collaboration inSan Diego, dramatic cost reductions are expected to be realized inapproximately 15 to 20 months, with cost savings increasing each year.
"The program implementation model Orbis Education used made the work onour end easy and straightforward," adds Sharp Chief Nursing Officer, JenniferJacoby. "Orbis Education set up the entire program, so we could concentrate onpatient care with no upfront capital cost on our part."
Graduates of the program will earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degreethrough a 14-month curriculum, provided they already hold a baccalaureatedegree in another field. The curriculum is comprehensive, encompassing morethan 600 hours of online course work and almost 900 hours of hands-on clinicalpreparation. Theory courses will be taught by University of Oklahoma nursingfaculty via interactive online classes that include threaded discussions,real-time web casts, projects, assignments and proctored examinations.Students have the flexibility of completing the online courses during day orevening hours. Hands-on clinical preparation is taught by appointed adjunctUniversity of Oklahoma faculty assigned to work directly with students atseveral Sharp HealthCare facilities.
About Orbis Education
Founded in 2003, Orbis Education leverages opportunities in nursingeducation by affiliating existing nursing education programs with majorhospitals. Orbis works to help so