The Arnold P. Gold Foundation (APGF) and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) announced this July that 50 schools from 38 states and the District of Columbia were selected to receive funding support to host White Coat Ceremonies, which emphasize the importance of providing compassionate care among health professionals. This year, Northwest Nazarene University was selected and is the first Idaho school to host a White Coat Ceremony. Launched in 2013, this ground-breaking collaboration between APGF and AACN was developed to promote humanistic, patient-centered care among future generations of registered nurses.
"By reaching students early in their professional formation with the message that compassion matters, our goal is to ensure that all future healthcare providers see humanism as foundational to their practice. We remain so grateful to the Elaine and Mike Adler family for their enabling support of this crucial collaboration," said Dr. Richard Levin, President and CEO of The Arnold P. Gold Foundation. "We are delighted to continue our collaboration with AACN this year, which expands the universe of nursing schools offering White Coat Ceremonies to 210 institutions nationwide."
Barbra Lester, Chief Nurse Administrator of the NNU School of Nursing, said, “It is an honor to be the first Idaho nursing program to hold this type of ceremony. The very fabric of what this ceremony stands for aligns with our nursing program that embodies the philosophy of head, heart and hand. We not only teach the science of nursing but also the art of nursing.”
Though White Coat Ceremonies have been conducted by medical schools for more than 20 years, the APGF-AACN initiative marks the first time a coordinated effort has been developed to offer similar events at schools of nursing.
To date, 160 nursing schools in 46 states plus the District of Columbia have received financial support and guidance to offer a White Coat Ceremony. White Coat Ceremonies highlight the important role compassion plays in providing patient-centered care and improving health outcomes," said Dr. Juliann Sebastian, chair of the AACN Board of Directors. "With health care becoming more interprofessional and team-driven, nurses, physicians and other providers must embed humanism in their practice as a way to elevate the patient-care experience."
NNU will hold its ceremony on Monday, September 26, 2016, at 6 p.m. in the Brandt Center's Swayne Auditorium while inducting 44 new nursing students into the school’s program.