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Forum held for community to voice concerns about nursing program

10 April 2015

A forum for healthcare and business representatives from the Pratt Community College service area was hosted on April 6 by the college. The purpose of the forum was to brief the group about the impact of the recent accreditation visit by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), the national accrediting body. Thirty-five people attended the forum, including representative from health care agencies in Pratt, Medicine Lodge, Cunningham and Greensburg. Most of these agencies currently employee PCC nursing graduates.

PCC president, Dr. Michael Calvert said the forum provided background and details about the nursing program as a whole, along with clarifying information and answering questions about the future of the program.

“It gave us a chance to hear from the community that the nursing program is needed in the area,” Calvert said, “Most people left very positive with a clearer understanding of what has happened and where we are going from here.”

During the forum, Dr. Calvert emphasized the importance of receiving support from the service area health care agencies through employment of PCC graduates, sponsorship of nursing student scholarships and collaboration with the nursing program to insure quality outcomes. Those in attendance were eager and very willing to provide their support and communicated the value and need for the PCC nursing program.

On March 12, 2015, PCC was informed by site visitors from ACEN that it would not recommend continued accreditation of the Associate Degree in Nursing Program to its board of commissioners. They cited various reasons related to the number of faculty and staff, curriculum and outcomes. Their recommendations will be taken to their board for action in June 2015 where they will make their final decision later this summer.
Until that time, the ADN program remains accredited by ACEN. Current students graduating prior to this final decision will complete their studies under an accredited program.

On the same date, the ADN Program was informed by site visitors from the Kansas State Board of Nursing (KSBN), that deficiencies in the program were identified. They will complete their report and submit it to the KSBN Board for review and action in June. Further action may be taken at that time which could include the program being placed on “conditional approval.”

The Practical Nursing Program is not impacted by the ACEN accreditation announcement.