DNP track curriculum enhancements focus on local, global population health

DNP track curriculum enhancements focus on local, global population health

The UW School of Nursing’s Community Health Nursing track within the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree program has been renamed to Population Health Nursing. The change goes into effect for the 2018-2019 academic year.

The new name better reflects the current and future need for public health nursing expertise and an adapted curriculum, said Dr. Betty Bekemeier, UW professor of nursing and the Population Health Nursing track lead.

“This name change reflects recent curriculum enhancements that deepen our school’s longstanding commitment to preparing nurse leaders to care for whole communities and populations,” Bekemeier said. “We clearly need more DNP nursing leaders with the expertise to lead broad based health improvements and systems change.”

This track is designed for nurses who are interested in improving population health, healthcare and community systems in the U.S. and around the world.

Students learn to become leaders to work effectively with diverse stakeholders and communities. They also use skills in community assessment and engagement, policy and program development and evaluation, budgeting, and management to drive healthy change, policy, and high-impact solutions to health problems.

“With these skills, these DNP-prepared leaders will – and do – lead state and national programs, engage with communities to create healthier environments, advance health policies and establish global exchanges,” Bekemeier said.

The new track has three areas of focus:

Health Systems Transformation: Students focus on leadership and the transformation of health systems and nursing practice through strategic planning, assessment, implementation, and advocacy. They learn to facilitate equitable prevention and care across the health continuum from community to clinic.

Community Engagement for Health Equity: Students gain skills to partner with diverse stakeholders in implementing and evaluating programs and policies to promote health equity. Social justice and health promotion among vulnerable populations is emphasized.

Global and Cross-cultural Health: Students have an emphasis on health equity, preparing them to become nurse leaders to improve population health in Seattle and around the world. They also learn to understand and embrace the way culture impacts health.

About the UW School of Nursing

The UW School of Nursing is one of the nation’s leading nursing schools dedicated to preparing the next generation of nurse leaders to ensure health equity for all people through care, advocacy and research. We make an impact in communities in Seattle and throughout the world by providing lifelong learning opportunities, conducting innovative research and accelerating scientific discovery.

At the UW School of Nursing, population health research and improvement occurs at every level – from internationally recognized faculty to first-year nursing students.

Population health statistics at a glance:

  • 1/3 of nursing faculty are currently research questions of population health and have earned millions of dollars in funding for these initiatives
  • 45% of all Doctor of Nursing Practice final projects address population health
  • 54% of Ph.D. candidates are conducting population health research
  • 6 out of 9 BSN honors research projects address population health