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Louisiana receives Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant to transform Health Care through Nursing

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The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) has announced that the Louisiana Action Coalition is one of only 20 states to be part of a new $3 million initiative, the Future of Nursing State Implementation Program. The program is designed to help states prepare the nursing profession to address our nation’s most pressing health care challenges—access, quality, and cost.

The program bolsters efforts already underway in 50 states and the District of Columbia— the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action—to transform health care through nursing and meet the challenges stemming from an aging and more diverse population. A joint initiative of AARP and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Campaign for Action is working to implement the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) evidence-based recommendations on the future of nursing. The Campaign provides a voice and a vehicle for nurses at all levels to lead system change to improve care for patients and families by collaborating with business, consumer, and other health professional organizations.

“This grant is designed to spur progress in Louisiana, which already is doing impressive work to transform nursing education, practice, and leadership,” said Susan B. Hassmiller, PhD, RN, FAAN, RWJF senior adviser for nursing and director of the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action. “The Foundation is committed to helping states build a more highly educated, diverse nursing workforce that will improve health outcomes for patients, families, and communities.”

The initiative will provide a $150,000 two-year grant to the Louisiana Action Coalition which is matched by a $150,000 grant from The Rapides Foundation, a health legacy foundation based in Central Louisiana.  Grants were announced in 19 other states.

“Our focus on meaningful outcomes that will truly transform health care in Louisiana was a key factor in being selected,” said Cynthia Bienemy, Louisiana Action Coalition, co-lead, and Director of the Louisiana Center for Nursing.  “We are part of an innovative movement working to shape the future of health care for all Americans.  The Louisiana Action Coalition is grateful for this support, which will strengthen our work.”

Denise Bottcher, Louisiana Action Coalition co-lead and Communications Director of AARP Louisiana, noted that the Action Coalition plans to focus on advancing the capacity of Advanced-Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) to meet the health care needs of Louisiana residents.

The Center to Champion Nursing in America (CCNA), an initiative of AARP, the AARP Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, serves as the national program office for the Future of Nursing State Implementation Program.

“This new program will help Action Coalitions get the strategic and technical support required to advance their goals,” said Susan Reinhard, PhD, RN, FAAN, senior vice president of the AARP Public Policy Institute and CCNA chief strategist. “Our hope is that with this support Louisiana will be even more effective in improving health outcomes for patients, families, and communities.”

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