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​News and Events​

The U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed H.R. 2, the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 with a bipartisan vote of 392-37! What does this mean for nurses?
  • Replace the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula for Medicare provider payment with an improved payment system that rewards quality, efficiency and innovation.
  • Create an incentive payment program, referred to as the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), which includes nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists and certified registered nurse anesthetists.
  • Expand who can document the face-to-face encounter required for Medicare durable medical equipment prescriptions to include advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) and physician assistants, as allowed by state law.
  • Extend a 2 year reauthorization for the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) - CHIP covers more than 8 million children and pregnant women in families that earn income above Medicaid eligibility levels. Authorization for this vital program is set to expire September 30.
  • Offer a 2-year extension of funding for Community Health Centers (CHC), the National Health Service Corps Fund (NHSC) and Teaching Health Centers
ANA applauds members of the House for working together to eliminate the SGR, protect CHIP and preserve funding for key public health programs. Repeal of the SGR has been a 12 year struggle, and now the ball is in the Senate's court.

We will need your help urging Senators to pass H.R. 2. Be sure to stay tuned for next steps!
Please join College of Nursing in congratulating Mr. Joe Lacher and Dr. Tracia Forman for their latest professional recognition. 
  • Joe Lacher, MSN, RN, NE–BC  was selected as a 2015 Top Nurse in Brownsville, TX by The International Nurses Association (INA). In addition to this acknowledgment, Mr. Lacher's biography is going to appear in Worldwide Leaders in Healthcare, recognizing Healthcare Providers of Excellence. A full color page in the nursing Section is devoted to members, highlighting their achievements, education and specialties.​
  • Tracia Forman, PhD, RN, CNE received a 1st place award in the Education Research Student Presenter Division at the Southern Nurses’ Research Society (SNRS) for the display of her dissertation work.  This purpose of this organization is to facilitate the production of the highest quality research in nursing in the region.  Acknowledgement by this organization is quite an honor. Good job! Well done! Tracia continues to be an energetic and participating member of UTB College of Nursing and will be a great asset for the future of nursing scholarship at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley.
Nursing Faculty Research Study Survey: “Transition to the Nurse Faculty Role: A National Perspective”​
We are asking you to support this research by participating in an online survey so that we can learn more about teaching preparation and institutional support available for new doctorally prepared nursing faculty. If you agree to participate, we are asking you to complete the online Transition to the Nurse Faculty Role (TNFR) Survey. 

To be eligible for this study, you must meet the following inclusion criteria:
  • PhD or DNP Degree in Nursing 
  • Full-time Nursing Faculty
  • 4 years or less teaching experience post-doctoral graduation
Participation is anonymous and voluntary. There are no direct benefits for participation and there are no negative consequences if you chose not to participate. The survey should take approximately 20 minutes to complete.
After survey completion you will have an opportunity to enroll your email address into a raffle to win one (1) Apple iPad. Your email address will not be linked to your survey responses.

Please click on the following link: Survey to access the survey. 
Project Sin Fronteras - Faculty Development Workshop - April 10 & 11, 2015
Project Sin Fronteras is a 2-Day Workshop designed to serve as a transformational platform that infuses Sustainability Concepts and Practices into the UTPA & UTB curriculum beginning Fall 2014. This program provides participants with information and skills to produce a new* or revised course syllabus.​  Read more...

Application Deadline: March 24, 2015
*Webinars/ Seminars/ Other Learning Opportunities​
Texas Department of State Health Services in collaboration with the UTPA CaPS, the Department of Social Work, and the Department of Continuing Education will be holding a mental health conference on April 10 & 11, 2015 focusing on behavioral and substance use among children and adolescents.
Behavioral Issues And Substance Use Among Children And Adolescents: Prevention and Interventions
When: April 10, 2015 (8am - 5pm) & April 11, 2015 (8am - 4pm)
Where: Ballroom, UTPA Main Campus 
CEU: 6 CEUs per day

*Webinars/ Seminars/ Other Learning Opportunities​
Southwest NSF Innovation Corps - Student Entrepreneurship Fellowship for UT Undergraduates
Do you have a great idea for a new, innovative product? Are you interested in Entrepreneurship and Commercialization? Do you want to learn from some of the leaders in the Texas and Austin entrepreneurship ecosystem? Do you want to network with other young leaders in innovation?
Application Deadline: Wednesday, April 15, 2015 @ 5pm(CT)
*Student/ Faculty Opportunities/ Employment Opportunities​
Texas APIN Webinar -  Using the Differentiated Educational Competencies in RN to BSN program​
Join us for  an important webinar, “Using the Differentiated Educational Competencies in RN to BSN program”. This  two hour webinar will provide you with ideas for teaching in today’s RN to BSN programs!

Date:   Tuesday, March 31st at  1 pm
  • Dr. Jan Hooper, Nursing Education Consultant,  Texas Board of Nursing, 
  • Dr. Melanie McEwen,  Associate Professor, University of Texas at Houston School of Nursing
  • Dr.  Susan England, Clinical Associate Professor, Texas State University School of Nursing
*Webinars/ Seminars/ Other Learning Opportunities​
The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing St. David’s CHPR presents Genetics and Environment in the Prevention of Chronic Disease Pre-Conference Workshop: 
Date: Tuesday, March 31, 2015 at 1:00-5:00 PM
Location: NUR 4.180 | School of Nursing, 1710 Red River, Austin, TX
Nursing CNEs: 4.0
Deadline to Register: March 25, 2015

2015 St. David's CHPR Annual Conference Preventing Chronic Disease Across the Lifespan​
Date: Wednesday, April 1, 2015 at 8:00am - 4:30pm
Location: Etter-Harbin Alumni Center | 2110 San Jacinto Blvd., Austin, TX
Nursing CNEs: 4.5
Deadline to Register: March 25, 2015

*Webinars/ Seminars/ Other Learning Opportunities​
U.S. Department of Agriculture​ - National Institute of Food and Agriculture: USDA-NIFA-HSI-004449
CFDA #10.223 Hispanic-Serving Institutions Education Grants Program(HSI)
A Principal Investigator (PI) who is interested in a funding opportunity with a limited submission component must adhere to the internal review and selection process. A pre-proposal must be submitted to the Office oSponsored Programs by 3/30/15.
Pre-Proposal Submission Deadline: March 30, 2015​
U.S. Department of Agriculture​ - Office of Advocacy and Outreach (OAO)​ Grant
CFDA #10.443 Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers Program. Funding opportunity number: OAO-00008​
Grant Application Deadline: April 13, 2015 
*Funding Opportunities​
April is Child Abuse Prevention Month with April 10, 2015 designated as Wear Blue Day.  We want to work with the Texas Organization of Baccalaureate and Graduate Nursing Education and have members wear blue on April 10th. Wear blue day  

As the number of Texas children being abused continue to rise it is important that everyone become involved.​

We would like to share with you some sad facts about an epidemic that is affecting the lives of America’s children.  More than three million children are reported as abused or neglected in America every year, with one million of those cases being confirmed.  And, sadly, over 160 children died in Texas alone last year from child abuse or neglect.

While these statistics are horrifying, there is hope.  We know that child abuse and neglect are preventable.  There is no reason for this many children to not enjoy a sense of security in the one place they should expect it most – home.  

By wearing blue on April 10, 2015 you will be making a statement.  With your help, we can stop this violence – and bring hope to America's children.  You can make a difference in the lives of our children. 

Valley Regional Medical Center is seeking your assistance in our recruiting efforts to fill 2 Nurse Graduate positions available in our Surgical Department.  We are reaching out all New Graduates who have passed their NCLEX and are ready to work.  Interested applicants should contact Norma Robles directly at 956-350-7144 and forward their resume to​
*Student/ Faculty Opportunities/ Employment Opportunities​
College of Nursing BSN students working with Dr. Reininger of the University of Texas School of Public Health Brownsville Regional Campus in partnership with other local organizations to make healthier communities is highlighted in The Texas Tribune - Trib+Health.

The Texas Tribune - The Q & A: Belinda Reininger - March 16, 2015
Belinda Reininger is a professor of health promotion and behavioral science at the University of Texas School of Public Health Brownsville Regional Campus. Reininger, in partnership with an active community advisory board in South Texas, has supported policy and environmental changes including tobacco-free ordinances, complete street ordinances, the building of bike trails, community gardens and farmers markets. Read more...
Full Practice Authority Bill​ - Texas House Bill 1885 has been filed!  This bill, in combination with Senate Bill 751, will grant Full Practice Authority for Texas NPs.  

Below are links to HB 1885, SB 751, as well as Texas Nurse Practitioners'  website where you may obtain more information and forms for communicating your support to your legislators.  Please take a few moments to contact your legislators in support of these important Bills.  

Please Support Full Practice Authority
Texas Nurse Practitioners has created this campaign to try and build support for HB 1885/SB 751 and by every account it is working.  Please take a moment and send a pre-written email to your state representative and to sign our petition in support of these two bills.  It takes no more than 30 seconds to complete the tasks.  Once you have successfully completed both tasks, please forward to your friends, family, colleagues, students, and anyone else you believe would be willing to support increasing access to care by passing full practice authority for advanced practice nurses.  Feel free to use the short blurb below which also includes a link to the petition/email domain.  What we have heard from the bill authors and other legislators is that we are causing quite a stir and building support to move the bills.  Please don’t delay.  Help us expand our reach so that we can make some real progress.

Please sign our petition to expand access to care by granting APRNs full practice authority. After signing the petition, please return to the site and send the pre-written message to your state legislator.  

Congratulations to Dr. Tamez for acceptance to the STT Research Symposium in Puerto Rico this March 2015. The title of her oral presentation is: Health Status Perceptions and Literacy Among Low Income Mexican Americans in Texas-Mexico Border Colonias. Read more...​​

The brief presents projections for the supply and demand of registered nurses (RNs) and licensed practical/vocational nurses (LPNs) for the entire U.S. in 2025. The brief also includes a summary of the importance of RNs and LPNs in the healthcare delivery system, types of services provided and the settings in which these professionals provide services.
Expanding Enrolllment in APRN Programs in Texas

TAB/Texas Team/TNA/CNAP APRN Legislative Initiative 2015 - TOBGNE Advisory Committee

Texas Team - A message to all Deans and Directors​
Congratulations Nurses for being The Most Ethical Profession for the 13th year in a row and once again topping the list of professions with the highest ethical standards in Gallup's 2014 survey on honesty and ethics.
American Nurses Association Declares 2015 the Year of Ethics​
UTB College of Nursing - Bachelor of Science in Nursing 
Class of 2016 Family Night 
October 23, 2014 at the Student Union El Gran Salon​
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