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Penn State Berks Practical Nursing program partners with Penn State Health St. Joseph

For the first time ever, Penn State Berks and Penn State Health St. Joseph are partnering to provide practical nursing students with hands-on patient experience.

Penn State Berks Practical Nursing students will be joining hospital staff to provide flu shots to hospital employees and their family members during the “Family & Friends” Flu Shot Clinic on the Bern Campus on October 13th and 15th. The students also will participate in the Public Flu Shot campaign on October 17th from 11am-4pm. More than 20 Penn State Berks students will help deliver flu vaccinations to as many as 2,000 people. The campaign coincides with a tailgate-themed special event on the campus to celebrate St. Joseph transition into Penn State Health.

The nursing clinical partnership began in September and is a required part of the clinical rotation for Penn State Berks’ licensed practical nurses. The student nurses do clinical rotations on general nursing units where they help with patient care, assessments and medication administration. They also will have the opportunity to observe in both the Breidegam Family Birthing Center and pediatrics at the Bern campus and on the Downtown Reading Campus at 6th and Walnut Streets.

Both organizations are looking forward to further developing the nursing program, according to Louise Frantz, the coordinator of Penn State Berks Practical Nursing program.

“Our students are most impressed by the friendly, welcoming nature of Penn State Health St. Joseph,” she said. “The students notice how everyone from support staff to physicians and nurses are very kind and very helpful. We value how the staff nurses’ collaborate with our students. This interaction is very positive and is making our students certainly feel welcomed and fell like the health care professionals they want to become.”

Cindy Hinsey, Nurse Education, Penn State Health St. Joseph further exclaims, “I am proud of the warm welcome our staff has given to the Penn State Berks Practical Nursing students and the positive relationships developing. I hope we can offer additional experiences for the students as our partnership grows.”

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