Vermont Nurses in Partnership

VNIP Semi-Annual Report January through June, 2009

We are late in getting reports completed due to the busy schedule of work that has been challenging the VNIP office resources – especially that resource called “time”!

The calendar year of 2009 started slowly, with the winter chill setting the tempo of VNIP work. This was very helpful for getting office work completed and to start preparing for the busy conference schedule. Significant progress was made on formalizing protocols for the Board of Directors and establishing a work plan. Sites for basic workshop and advanced preceptor sessions were recruited and arrangements made for VNIP’s diverse staff development support.

Vermont Preceptor and/or Staff Development Instruction/Consulting

• Basic Preceptor Workshops occurred at Brattleboro Memorial Hospital on March 27 & April 3, 2009; Rutland Area Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice offices on April 27 & 28; Northwestern Vermont Medical Center on April 29 & 30; and the Veterans Administration Medical Center on May 4 & 5.

• Advanced preceptor sessions included Civility in the Workplace at Northwestern Medical Center on April 6, 2009 and offered again at the Nursing Summit on April 9, 2009

• The current education calendar includes Basic Preceptor Workshop: Clinical Coaching: Developing Competence & Critical Thinking on August 19 & 20th, 2009, at North Country Hospital, Newport, VT; and September 22 & 29, 2009, at Gifford Memorial Hospital, Randolph, VT

• The schedule of Advanced Preceptor Development sessions include:

o Facing the Challenge: Difficult Communication at Northwestern Medical Center in St Albans, VT on August 28th. REGISTRATION CLOSED – this session is full!

o Affirmative Coaching - A Positive Approach to Staff Development at Northwestern Medical Center in St. Albans, VT on September 9th.

o Facing the Challenge: Difficult Communication at Gifford Medical Center in Randolph, VT on September 30th.

o Civility in the Workplace at Copley Hospital in Morrisville, VT on November 4th.

• VNIP collaborated with VONL to lay the groundwork for the 2009 VT Nursing Summit which was held on April 9 & 10, 2009. The program content for the 9th included sessions that addressed specific target audiences of academic faculty, nurse managers, and staff development professionals. A VNIP research report and an open meeting of the VNIP BOD was included along with discussion of further research. The VNIP site coordinators support limited ongoing data collection and volunteers were recruited to a ‘research committee’ for further dialogue.

• Susan was asked to serve on the Vermont Nursing Education Committee, which keeps her in direct connection with activities and issues related to Vermont Nursing Regulation.

• The Vermont Health Care Association has established a workgroup that is considering the development of Licensed Nurse Aide Credentialing of some sort. Alex Olin is taking the lead on this work, with consulting and support requested from VNIP.

• Susan met with Nursing Leadership at Mount Ascutney Hospital to discuss their approach to preceptor/intern support. They are considering a new position at the agency titled “Clinical Preceptor”. Supervisors, managers and the Education Dept. Head had questions regarding the ‘fit’ of this position with the VNIP Internship framework.

Presentations for specific agencies and/or regional conferences outside Vermont:

• South Florida Forum: 2nd Annual Preceptor Seminar on February 20, 2009. Presented a 3 hour workshop on experiential learning at South Florida Baptist Medical Center.

• Invitational conference re: prep and development of preceptors who work with newly licensed nurses. Raleigh, NC 2009, 3-10 The Vermont Internship Project: Evidence Based Preceptor Preparation – to relate preceptor preparation and role development to new nurse performance outcomes.

• For Geisenger Medical Center in Danville, PA the presentation was done via video conferencing on March 23rd, offering a session on Evidenced-based Preceptor/Intern Development.

• The New Hampshire Nurse Association requested a full day conference that detailed Mentor Programs and their use for transition to practice. This session was offered in Manchester, NH on March 31, 2009 - This resulted in queries from other agencies that may evolve into 2010 presentations. Susan is also working with this nurse leadership group in designing a survey tool for assessing the process and resources that agencies use for orientation.  

• Clinical Competence Development Courses:

o As contracted with New York State Nurse Association – March 2 – 4, 16, 17 in Latham; April 13 – 17 in Brooklyn; and May 11 – 15 in Binghamton, NY.

o Sessions are scheduled for October 21 – 27 in Westchester County; and for March 2010 in the Utica/Watertown, NY area.

o May 19 through 29, 2009 – VNIP faculty worked with Hawaii State Center for Nursing, Honolulu, Hawaii.  


Susan recently collaborated on article writing with Dr. Lenburg and other colleagues. The articles will showcase the COPA model and its current-day application in both academic and practice settings. To date, the National League for Nursing Journal - Nursing Education Perspectives, has accepted two articles for publication.

The research team of Pat Fry, Richard Watters, and Ellen Hagman are working on articles for publication of the research outcomes.

Other news and work:

Along with these formal presentations, the ongoing work of VNIP continues. Support staff work to implement budget management, establish program records, accept registrations, schedule resources for presentations and maintain the varied efforts of VNIP.

The research project, funded by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing, was completed in April and the final report was submitted in May. The research team has created summary reports, but these have not yet been approved for posting on the web.

Through contracted services, Anne Walker, Jane Oliphant and Ellen Hagman have developed additional advanced preceptor courses, completed contact hour applications, maintained the web site as an active, up-to-date resource, and published a newsletter that keeps all parties informed of various ‘transition to practice’ work.


• Mary Botter is assisting Susan with the development of a contracting proposal template and a proposal for the Army Nurse Corps.

• Kaiser Permanente of California has inquired into the framework, but needs to secure grant funding before entertaining a proposal.

• Indian Health Services is considering system-wide adoption of the framework, but have not yet discussed the site licensing aspects of that.

• NYSNA is interested in continuing the work with the model, but has no concrete plans for what that might look like or where the funding would come from.

Upcoming work:

• Presentation of preconference workshop at the NNSDO Conference in Philadelphia, PA on July 9th, 2009

• Featured speaker at The National Preceptor Summit, Loyola University, Chicago, Illinois August 7 & 8, 2009 – Evidence-Based Preceptor Development

• Need to finalize and submit proposal for Army Nurse Corps

• VNA staff have requested a workgroup that would target further modifications of the VNIP framework and tools to home care nursing. I need to complete the e-mail distribution list – to include all participants from this year’s Intensive Courses. Then I will put out a call for interested parties on a national level.

• Continue with LNA Credentialing process/work. Meetings are scheduled for Sept 24th and Oct 15th.

• Work plan for VT Nursing Summit 2010. Need to distribute the call for abstracts and develop a work plan with the assistance of Deb Limoges.

• Convene Vermont research workgroup

• Consider design for preceptor pin

• Consider naming of newsletter

o Solicit authors for newsletter articles

o Format quarterly report, calendar of event, updates/modifications of VNIP tools and planning of upcoming work for inclusion in newsletter

• Scheduling Preceptor workshops for Fall of 2009 & Winter/Spring 2010

o If anyone would like to host a session with either basic or advanced topics, please contact Susan Boyer as soon as possible. The first requesters will get their choice of dates (so long as we can maintain broad, equitable service across the state). Hosting facilities have the advantage of ‘on site’ delivery of the workshop and selection of dates. All sessions will include refreshments and lunch. Registration fees are listed in the flyer along with info regarding two free registrants for every Vermont HC agency. VNIP research sites receive a 50% fee discount as well.

Respectfully Submitted, Susan Boyer, Executive Director, VNIP


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