Christus St. Michael Health System is pleased to announce that its Nurse Residency Pathway Program achieved accreditation with distinction as a Practice Transition Program by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s (ANCC) Commission on Accreditation.

Christus St. Michael’s Nurse Residency Pathway is a yearlong program that incorporates adult learning, reflective practice, and experiential and blended learning techniques to advance the new graduate nurse from novice to advanced beginner, while establishing a foundation for continued professional development along Benner’s Stages of Clinical Competence. This residency program is the fourth to be accredited in the state of Texas and 37th in the United States.

ANCC Practice Transition Accreditation validates hospital residency or fellowship programs that transition registered nurses (RNs) and advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) into new practice settings that meet rigorous, evidence-based standards for quality and excellence. Nurses in accredited transition programs, like Nurse Residency Pathway Program, experience programs that promote knowledge, skills and professional behaviors necessary to deliver safe, high-quality care.

According to the Press Release, clinical educators believe there is tremendous value in transition from education to successful practice for new graduate nurses, and with recognition of this type, Christus St. Michael’s program is even more valuable to the organization and its patients.

“The Nurse Residency Pathway Program helps new nurses get comfortable with patients and helps to improve their skill set in practice,” said Sherry Roberson, MSN, RN-BC, Clinical Education Manager for Christus St. Michael Health System. “When a new nurse comes in from school to practice – just like in any line of work – what you learn in school is just the tip of the iceberg. The real world contains new challenges and situations that they don’t see in school, and this program helps to bridge the gap and improve the care provided to our patients.”

New nurses are paired with an experienced nurse and undergo a blended learning curriculum that includes classroom setups, skills exercises and simulation scenarios for everything from intensive treatment scenarios to managing relationships – all in a safe place to learn. This improves confidence, which translates directly to providing better care to patients.

“This program provides invaluable experiences and puts new graduate nurses in a community of like-minded people who are going through the same thing,” said Roberson. “We work through issues and ideas with a lot of reflective practice and feedback, learning about everything from stress management to communication and the importance of evidence-based practice.”

For patients at Christus St. Michael Health System, this recognition can help to instill confidence in the treatment they and their families are receiving from caregivers who are striving for the best and will be better prepared.

“We are proud that our Nurse Residency Pathway Program is recognized by the ANCC as one of the highest-quality transition programs for nurses,” said Louise Thornell, PhD, MsBA, RN, NE-BC, VP/Chief Nursing Officer for CHRISTUS St. Michael Health System. “ANCC accreditation gives nurse residents and fellows assurance that CHRISTUS St. Michael Health System offers an elevated transition program with a clear course of instruction and reliable evaluation methods. With ANCC Accreditation, our transitioning nurses gain the skills and confidence needed to perform effectively within a new practice setting.”