A comparison of nursing skill competency among internationally educated nurses
Background: The United States (US) will soon face the largest shortage of registered nurses (RNs) to date. In the state of California, 100,000 nurses will be needed by the year 2030 primarily due to the burgeoning older population. Nearly 20% of RNs in California were educated outside of the United States. In response to the need for further education, condensed courses are offered year round to internationally educated nurses (IENs) with a focus on assessment of skill competency. The purpose of this presentation is to describe a skills competency review and assessment procedure for IENs enrolled in a medical-surgical course at Dominican University. Methods: Twelve IENs participated in the competency review and assessent procedure as part of the lab component of a Foundations of Professional Nursing in the USA course. Instructors randomly-assigned students to a station that involved 4 skills on a manikin patient. Each student was scored by a test monitor using a scoring rubric. Students then had 20 hours of labtime to review rubics, watch videos, and practice. Students then had a posttest at the same station with the same test monitor. Results: Prior to the course, scores were low with many of the IENs unable to complete the skills stations. A significant improvement occurred in scores for 14 of the 16 skills when students were tested at the conclusion of the medical-surgical nursing course under the same conditions. Conclusion/Next steps: Conducting the competency review and assessment procedure was useful for faculty to determine a baseline from which to provide practice sessions to the IENs.