Success of Nursing ICAPP Program Means New Funding For CSU

COLUMBUS, GA. --- Columbus State Universitys success in offsetting a growing shortage of healthcare workers has prompted the renewal of CSUs efforts as part of a $3.8 million second-phase University System of Georgia program to add more than 700 nurses and other specialists to Georgia hospitals.

The 700 new healthcare workers will come on top of more than 600 already enrolled in, or graduated from, the Board of Regents Health Professionals Initiative, administered by the boards Intellectual Capital Partnership Program (ICAPP).

The two-year-old initiative matches private sector healthcare providers with state colleges and universities to create programs that are producing fast-track graduates in the fields of nursing, medical technology and pharmacy.

At CSU phase one of the Health Professionals Initiative that started in 2002 will graduate a projected 95 new nurses by May 2005 for its partners, Columbus Regional Healthcare System, St. Francis Hospital and Doctors Hospital. Thirty-eight students already have graduated.

Statewide, phase one of the initiative resulted in 632 additional new licensed healthcare professionals graduating from University System special fast-track programs - well in excess of the original goal of 500 new graduates. Phase two will use the same structure, and will leverage the $2.05 million state commitment with $1.75 million in cash and in-kind support from 26 private employer partners. Twelve University System institutions will be the partners in phase two and will graduate an additional 721 healthcare professionals statewide over the two-year effort, 114 of which will be nursing jobs in Muscogee County. The private sector partners guarantee program graduates jobs.

Renewing CSUs part of the statewide program means about $400,000 to the university over the next two years. The programs private partners are pledging about a quarter of that.

Were delighted the local hospitals and the Board of Regents see the quality of the students that graduate from Columbus State Universitys nursing department, said Martha Saunders, vice president of academic affairs. The ICAPP model for this program began at CSU with a computer programmer training program for TSYS. This Health Professionals Initiative care ICAPP is yet another example of how CSU is uniquely positioned to meet the needs of the community.

Tom Titus, senior vice president for Columbus Regional Healthcare System, said there is indeed a critical demand locally for quality healthcare workers, a demand CSU is addressing.

We have a constant need for clinical healthcare professionals, he said. This kind of program is really a fast track to provide us the training we need.

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This and other news releases detailing the ICAPP Health Professionals Initiative may be found on the ICAPPR Web site at: www.icapp.org/employees/hpi.phtml

For more informaiton, contact: June Goyne, 706- 565-3649, goyne_june@ColumbusState.edu.