November 13, 2020
Contact: Brian Consiglio, 573-882-9144, firstname.lastname@example.org
An aging population and workforce in the United States has created a nursing shortage, and there will be more registered nurse jobs available through 2022 than any other profession in the country, according to The American Nurses Association. To help meet the nursing shortage, the University of Missouri broke ground Friday on the new Sinclair School of Nursing facility, which is expected to be completed by spring 2022. The 64,585-square-foot, $30 million facility will be donor-funded and located at the same site on MU’s campus as the previous Sinclair School of Nursing.
“Nursing students are now entering very complex environments, and this new facility will be equipped to help foster different types of learning,” said Sarah Thompson, dean of the School of Nursing. “We are excited to soon have the space to increase our class sizes and help do our part to meet the nursing shortage in Missouri and the country as a whole.”
The new facility will be equipped with a simulation center where students can practice the fundamentals of patient care using state-of-the-art task trainers and simulators. The simulator rooms are designed to mimic a hospital setting and allow students to practice real-world scenarios that require them to think critically through complex patient issues and prioritize their responses quickly.
“In a clinical setting, nurses are bombarded with information very quickly and they need both critical thinking and clinical reasoning skills to perform in an environment that is changing in a dynamic fashion,” Thompson said. “The new building and the educational resources that will be in there will help us to improve in those areas.”
In the new facility, nursing students will be able to enjoy a commons space that is equipped with a kitchenette and room for studying, socializing and relaxing. Conference and huddle rooms will allow faculty and researchers to collaborate on research projects as well as conduct classes remotely with distance-learning graduate students. In addition, the expanded size of the new building will allow the school to accept more qualified applicants and have the capacity to educate and graduate more nurses.
Thompson took over as dean of MU’s nursing school in 2018, and her goal to meet the health needs of Missourians, particularly in underserved areas, remains her top priority. She serves with Mary Beck, MU Health Care’s chief nursing officer, in overseeing an academic partnership between MU Health Care and the School of Nursing.
“Multidisciplinary research is key for developing collaborative teams that aim to improve patient care and support the citizens of Missouri in both urban and rural areas,” Beck said. “Nurses play a huge role in the health of our nation and world. They work around the clock to provide assessments and interventions that patients need to be healed and comforted.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has shined a spotlight on the role nurses play as front-line caregivers. In addition to their role in clinical settings like hospitals and nursing homes, they also play a part in educating the public about a variety of health-related topics like cancer, heart disease and the importance of preventative care.
“Nurses are the front line of health care, and they are fundamentally key to patient outcomes,” Thompson said. “In the midst of this nursing shortage, we can’t underestimate the need for qualified nurses and the impact they have every day. They have sacrificed under the strain of the pandemic while continuing to promote the health and well-being of Missourians.”