VA Nursing Academic Partnerships (VANAP), a collaborative program between VA facilities and nursing schools, offers students a comprehensive clinical experience with a focus on Veteran care. Currently in its 2nd year with 25 locations nationwide, the program develops a mutually beneficial relationship; students receive intensive clinical training, while supplying Veterans Health Administration a source of top-notch nurses to best serve our Veterans.
Studies reveal the many advantages of VANAP. For students, consistent clinical sites each semester generate greater familiarity and engagement with faculty and, as a result, more efficient patient care. Concepts taught in the classroom are readily put into practice at the hospital. According to Dr. Mary Dougherty, director of nursing education in VA’s Office of Academic Affiliations, VANAP’s union of academia and evidence-based practice is responsible for several accomplishments critical to Veteran care, “such as reducing psychiatric inpatient recidivism, reducing length of stay in ICUs, [and] improving the therapy for diabetes.”
VA staff nurses also reap benefits. RNs working alongside students experience increased job satisfaction. Their temporary teaching roles result in a deeper connection with the program overall. Many of them pursue advanced degrees following an experience with VANAP.
Most importantly, VANAP creates nurses shaped specifically to address the unique needs of our Veterans. By the end of the 4-year program, graduates are fully accustomed to the culture and mission at VA.
At Veterans Health Administration, the largest employer of nurses, we ensure our nursing students have all the training and educational support necessary to maximize their potential for providing quality care to our Veterans. Learn more about opportunities in nursing at VA.