Bassett Welcomes First Group of Family Nurse Practitioner Residents

First Bassett Group of Family Nurse Practitioner Residents
Bassett's First Group of Family Nurse Practitioner Residents (left to right): Jeffrey Cooke, Kimberly Szucha Wennberg, Jessica Salerno, Tenzin Sangmo

Last fall, a federal grant of $2.7 million was awarded to Bassett Medical Center to support the startup of a post-graduate family nurse practitioner (FNP) residency program and this month, Bassett welcomed its first group of post-graduate FNP residents: Jeffrey Cooke, Kimberly Szucha Wennberg, Jessica Salerno, and Tenzin Sangmo.

Bassett was one of 11 institutions nationwide to receive the Health Resources and Services Administration grant to develop the FNP post-graduate residency program. This FNP residency is housed at Bassett's Family Medicine Practice in Oneonta; the residents will also complete specialty rotations throughout the network.

Gregory Rys, DNP, FNP-BC, was the lead researcher for the grant project and is director of the Bassett Healthcare Network's Family Nurse Practitioner Residency Program.

"This program will provide an integrative training platform for new nurse practitioners so they can confidently and proficiently serve as a primary care provider in a complex health-care arena," explains Dr. Rys.

This newest residency program responds to a 2010 report on the future of nursing by the Institute of Medicine (IOM). The IOM report called for residency training for all advanced practice registered nurses, including nurse practitioners. IOM renewed that recommendation in 2015.

Bassett launched this newest residency program in conjunction with its academic partners: Columbia University, SUNY Binghamton, SUNY Upstate and SUNY Polytechnic. Candidates for the Nurse Practitioner Residency Training Program in rural primary care medicine must be recent graduates of a Masters in Nursing or Doctors of Nursing Practice program, and certified as a family nurse practitioner with a stated commitment to practice as a primary care provider in a rural or underserved setting. The program will accept eight residents next year and ten residents in year four.