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April 2006 Press Release







(Annapolis, MD) April 27, 2006 -- The Health Services Cost Review Commission (HSCRC) has awarded seven institutions grants totaling $6 million over five years as part of the first round of funding in the Competitive Institutional Grants component of the Nurse Support Program (NSP II). 

“Increasing Maryland’s supply of bedside nurses is critical to our State staying at the forefront of medical care and innovation in this country,” said Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. “And this program partners the private and public sectors in a unique working relationship.”

To demonstrate his support, Governor Ehrlich endorsed a collaboration between the HSCRC and the Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) to administer the Nurse Support Program II. Funding for NSP II is being provided through a 0.1% increase to the rate structure of all hospitals retroactive from July 1, 2005, which generates approximately $8.8 million annually to be awarded, to promote the program’s goal of increasing the number of bedside nurses in Maryland Hospitals by expanding the capacity of Maryland’s nursing programs. During the 2006 Legislative Session, Governor Ehrlich introduced Senate Bill 230/House Bill 322—Nurse Support Program Assistance Fund to codify this important program and create a special fund to ensure unused monies remain in the NSP II fund and are used to increase the number of Maryland’s nurses and nurse faculty instead of reverting back to the State’s general fund at the end of each fiscal year.

"Like the rest of the nation, Maryland is experiencing a crisis in nursing that continues to grow," said Department of Health and Mental Hygiene Secretary S. Anthony McCann. "This unique program is designed to produce more nurses in a faster time frame."

This innovative program is a unique venture that teams hospitals and colleges to create partnerships to address the critical shortage of nurses. The projected outcomes of this first round of seven institutional grants expects to increase undergraduate nursing enrollments by 500 students and the graduate nursing enrollments by an estimated 250-300 students. 

          Of 26 proposals submitted, the following seven were funded: 

Lead Institution:           Anne Arundel Community College
Project Title:                 Concurrent Enrollment Option
Partners:                       Villa Julie College & College of Southern Maryland

Lead Institution:          College of Southern Maryland 
Project Title:                 Southern Maryland Nurse Support
Partners:                       Calvert Memorial Hospital, Civista Medical Center, & St. Mary’s Hospital

Lead Institution:           Coppin State University 
Project Title:                  Expanding Nursing Capacity through Shared Resources
Partners:                       Maryland General Hospital, Kernan Hospital, and Union Memorial 


Lead Institution:           Harford Community College
Project Title:                  Accelerated Nursing Program and Student Success in Nursing
Partner:                          Upper Chesapeake Medical Center

Lead Institution:           University of Maryland, Baltimore 
Project Title:                  Master’s Preparation of Staff Nurses to Expand Clinical Instruction

Partners:                        Franklin Square Hospital Center & University of Maryland Medical


Lead Institution:           University of Maryland, Baltimore
Project Title:                 The Doctor of Nursing Practice: An Initiative to Increase Maryland’s

                                        Nursing Faculty

Lead Institution:            Villa Julie College
Project Title:                  Increasing Baccalaureate Nursing Candidates for Maryland Hospitals
Partners:                       Carroll Hospital Center, Union Memorial Hospital, Upper Chesapeake

                                        Health System

Through the NSP II Program, awards are being made to two types of initiatives, the Competitive Institutional Grants, as detailed above, and Statewide Initiatives. 

Competitive Institutional Grants require formal proposals in response to a Request for Applications and include initiatives to expand Maryland’s nursing capacity through hospital and nursing school collaboration, increase Maryland nursing faculty, increase student retention, and increase the pipeline for nursing faculty. 

Statewide Initiatives provide funding for nursing scholarships and fellowships described below. 

  • Graduate Nursing Scholarship and Living Expenses Grants for students to complete the graduate education necessary to become nursing faculty at Maryland institutions of higher education.

  • Fellowships for new nursing faculty hired by Maryland institutions to expand enrollments in their nursing programs.

  • State Nursing Scholarship and Living Expenses Grants for students enrolled in registered nursing programs at Maryland institutions.

Applications for the Statewide Initiatives are due by June 30, 2006.

For more information, see www.mhec.state.md.us/Grants/NSPII/NSPII.asp

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