MMH Develops Graduate Nursing Orientation Program

Massena Memorial Hospital developed a new Graduate Nursing Orientation Program to recruit new  nursing graduates along with orienting and welcoming these nurses to a new career at MMH. The program is team approach introducing the new nurses to all areas of the hospital from the Intensive Care Unit, Medical/Surgical, Maternity, Infection Prevention and more. The new Graduate Nurse Orientation Program is designed for the newly graduated nurse to facilitate the integration of skills and knowledge
At MMH, we recognize the new graduates’ level of knowledge and enthusiasm! We also recognize that they will experience a moderate degree of stress during your transition into hospital-based nursing. This program is essentially, bridging the gap, utilizing a combined classroom and clinical experience to assist the new nurses in developing organizational and clinical skills while increasing your level of confidence and skills in customer relations.
All "new grads" will work with experienced educators; dedicated clinical preceptors pulled from the staffing pattern to give focused attention, and experienced clinical buddies.
Ralene North, Chief Nurse Executive at MMH, also believes that the new nursing graduates will become valuable members of the hospital staff.
“We are very excited to bring these six excellent graduate nurses to the MMH team,” said North. “Our goal is to provide them with the needed tools and education to begin their long term employment with MMH. I am confident all of them will be an asset to the quality care of our friends, family, and community.”
Massena Memorial Hospital would like to welcome six new graduate nurses to their staff,  Heather Hollister, Jessica Johnson, Megan McDonald, Katie McNeil, Erin Tassie, and Rachel Ward.  All six are the first graduates of the new Graduate Nursing Program offered at MMH. Other than Johnson who is a graduate of North Country Community College, all of the other women are graduates of SUNY Canton Nursing Program.
Most of the women did their clinical rotations and other required work at MMH and spoke highly of the hospital and the staff.
“I did my fourth semester of clinical here at MMH,” said Katie McNeil. “I lost a lot of confidence in my third semester and because of that I came here (Massena Memorial Hospital) extremely nervous. I gained a lot of my confidence back working here though because everyone here is beyond approachable and I have never felt lost.”
McNeil also described MMH as her dream place to work and how easy the documentation process was.
“The staff here at MMH thoroughly helped me with documentation and working here helped boost my confidence to do well in my classes,” said McNeil. “This was the first place I applied to work at and when I got the call I was extremely excited.”
Heather Hollister did her LPN (licensed practical nurse) and RN (registered nurse) clinical rotations at MMH too and described the hospital as her “dream place to work”.
“I always thought MMH was my dream place to work,” said Hollister. “I did my LPN and RN rotations here too. I just love the staff here because we all work well together. The way the staff treats their patients is amazing because they treat them as an individual and not another case number.”
Rachel Ward has been here the longest out of the six graduates and has been coming to MMH for a long time for checkups as well as other activities.
“I live in Massena and have lots of family around the area that recommended working here at the hospital,” said Ward. “I have done a lot of activities here and started out working at MMH as an aide in the Allied Health program in high school. The staff here has always been very welcoming and easy to talk to so it was an easy choice to start a career in health care here.”
Erin Tassie, whose mother was a nurse at MMH for 20 years, Jessica Johnson, who has family that works at MMH, and Megan McDonald all shared the same sentiments about Massena Memorial Hospital. All three described MMH as “a great work environment with great people, and a great place to learn”.
Tammy Mitchell, RN, MMH Director of Emergency Services and Perinatal Services, is just one of the many teachers that have helped develop the Graduate Nursing Program to help the new nursing graduates excel.
“Our Graduate Nursing Program just started this year and we haven’t had graduate nurses here in a really long time,” said Mitchell. “I only got to spend four hours with all of them but I thought they were all wonderful young women. All of them are really ambitious because they want to follow a plan they set out for themselves, while others want to jump into specialties like ED (Emergency Department) or OB/GYN (Obstetrics & Gynecology). 
Mitchell is happy that some of the graduates want to jump into different specialty departments because it’s hard to find some specialty nurses; Mitchell noted that sometimes it takes six months to find nurses for those departments.
Massena Memorial Hospital has a bright future and has the potential to be the best hospital in St. Lawrence County Mitchell also noted.
“We are constantly getting bigger and better,” said Mitchell. “Our ER is going to be bigger and as we continue to work towards getting affiliation with different hospitals we are looking to bring in new services and even bring back some that we had to cut in the past. I just believe we could be the best hospital in the area, possibly best in the county.”
The New Graduate Nursing Orientation Program at MMH is a comprehensive 90 day program that includes: classroom style education, direct patient care, simulated learning experiences, preceptor and staff development support and ongoing evaluation.



February 2017

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