HCA Healthcare, Inc. (NYSE: HCA), one of the nation’s leading healthcare providers, today announced that it will donate $1.5 million to Florida International University’s (FIU) Nicole Wertheim College of Nursing & Health Sciences (NWCNHS) to expand its faculty and offer scholarships to increase enrollment and help address the national nursing shortage.
FIU is a federally-designated Hispanic and Minority Serving Institution with a student body that is 61 percent Hispanic. One of the challenges in addressing the national shortage of nurses has been a shortage of qualified RNs to teach in nursing programs. The partnership is part of HCA Healthcare’s commitment of $10 million over three years to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs) in order to advance diversity in healthcare.
“HCA Florida Healthcare and FIU have a longstanding relationship and a shared commitment to serving South Florida,” said Chuck Hall, national group president of HCA Healthcare. “We are thrilled to announce this partnership with FIU to help address the nursing faculty shortage by supporting programs that help expand the number of registered nurses qualified to teach our country’s future nurses.”
According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, in 2019, U.S. nursing schools turned away more than 80,000 qualified baccalaureate and graduate nursing applicants because of an insufficient number of faculty to teach them. FIU offers three nurse educator tracks with a curriculum that was developed in compliance with the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) accreditation requirements to include expansion of clinical knowledge and skills in a specialty area of practice, as well as providing knowledge in pedagogical principles, didactic and clinical teaching strategies, and student clinical supervision experience.
“We are excited to announce this partnership with FIU that helps address one of the challenges in overcoming the national nursing shortage,” said Sherri Neal, chief diversity officer of HCA Healthcare. “This partnership also furthers our commitment to advancing diversity in healthcare and demonstrates our continued efforts in developing a diverse pipeline of healthcare professionals and future leaders.”
HCA Healthcare’s East Florida Division has a longstanding partnership with NWCNHS dating back to 1976. In 2002, the East Florida Division paved the way for the College to launch the Foreign-Educated Physician to Nurse Program with a $1.1 million gift over four years to support implementation and promotion for the first 48 foreign-educated physicians to pursue their goal of becoming registered nurses. This pioneering program was later expanded with U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration grants, and as of 2021 has graduated 840 diverse foreign-educated physicians to registered nurses.
“From our collaboration to launch the nation’s first Foreign-Educated Physician to Nurse re-careering program twenty years ago, to this latest venture to boost enrollment in our nurse educator programs, FIU Nursing is grateful to HCA Healthcare for their continued support as we develop innovative solutions that address critical healthcare industry challenges,” said Ora L. Strickland, dean of FIU’s Nicole Wertheim College of Nursing & Health Sciences.
HCA Healthcare has a history of partnering with organizations to develop future healthcare leaders. In 2021, HCA Healthcare announced $1.5 million to Florida A&M University’s (FAMU) School of Allied Health Sciences to strengthen students’ pathways from undergraduate to graduate to management careers in the healthcare industry. In 2019, HCA Healthcare donated $3.5 million to the University of Houston (UH) College of Nursing to benefit the faculty, staff and students. Also in 2019, the HCA Healthcare Scholars at Fisk University program was created to provide scholarships, career planning support and internship opportunities for high-achieving undergraduates. In addition, HCA Healthcare committed $1 million to Tennessee State University in 2015 to fund internship opportunities and support the growth of the Health Information Management program. These partnerships and others with industry- and school-based associations, including the National Urban League, the National Association of Health Services Executives and the National Association of Latino Healthcare Executives, are part of HCA Healthcare’s continued efforts to strengthen the diversity of the organization’s talent pipeline.
About HCA Healthcare
Nashville-based HCA Healthcare is one of the nation’s leading providers of healthcare services comprising 182 hospitals and approximately 2,300 ambulatory sites of care, including surgery centers, freestanding ERs, urgent care centers, and physician clinics, in 20 states and the United Kingdom. With its founding in 1968, HCA Healthcare created a new model for hospital care in the United States, using combined resources to strengthen hospitals, deliver patient-focused care and improve the practice of medicine. HCA Healthcare has conducted a number of clinical studies, including one that demonstrated that full-term delivery is healthier than early elective delivery of babies and another that identified a clinical protocol that can reduce bloodstream infections in ICU patients by 44%. HCA Healthcare is a learning health system that uses its more than 35 million annual patient encounters to advance science, improve patient care and save lives. Please click here to connect with HCA Healthcare on social media.
All references to “Company,” “HCA” and “HCA Healthcare” as used throughout this document refer to HCA Healthcare, Inc. and its affiliates.