Western University’s College of Graduate Nursing Receives Hartford

Foundation Grant to Create Web-based Geriatric Curriculum for Nurses

The College of Graduate Nursing at Western University has received a

$90,000 grant from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN)

and The John A. Hartford Foundation to develop new national standards for

educating advanced practice nurses in geriatric health care.

“”There is an increasing need for nurse practitioners in geriatric health

care because of the increasing number of geriatric patients in the US,””

said Karen Hanford, MSN, FNP, PA-C, dean of the College of Graduate


The college is developing a Generalist Geriatric Competencies Inventory-a

list of the skills all graduate nursing programs should require-to insure

that family nurse practitioners are able to care for geriatric patients.

The college will use this list to create Internet-based course work.

Western University’s College of Graduate Nursing teaches its students, who

live and work in 12 different states, almost entirely over the Internet.

“”Western University College of Graduate Nursing is taking a lead role by

defining innovative approaches to preparing nurses to care for older

adults,”” said Deidre Thornlow, MN, RN, AACN project director. “”The

competencies inventory they produce will be shared with schools of nursing

throughout the nation.””

The College of Graduate Nursing is one of 10 graduate schools to receive

funds. A total of 136 graduate and undergraduate schools applied. The

grants were made possible by The John A. Hartford Foundation, a private

philanthropy devoted to providing effective and affordable health care to

the nation’s growing elderly population.

Nurse practitioners are advanced practice nurses, meaning they are trained

and licensed to perform minor surgical procedures, order and interpret

diagnostic and laboratory tests and prescribe medication. They are

sometimes the main medical care providers for people living in rural or

remote areas.

For more information on Western University’s College of Graduate Nursing

or its geriatric nursing education project, contact Dean Hanford at (909)

469-5523 or via e-mail at khanford@westernu.edu.