AACN Honors School of Nursing Partnership

November 2013Andrew Schwartz

On Monday, October 28, 2013, in Washington, DC, the American Association of Colleges of Nursing recognized UC San Francisco School of Nursing’s Elev8 Project with the AACN’s first Exemplary Academic-Practice Partnership Award. Dean David Vlahov and Associate Dean Judy Martin-Holland accepted the recognition for the School’s Family Health Care Nursing faculty and its partner, the Alameda County Center for Healthy Schools and Communities.

Funded by a three-year, $1.75 million grant from The Atlantic Philanthropies, UCSF’s Elev8 Healthy Students and Families project aims to increase the sustainability of health centers at five Oakland middle schools. UCSF School of Nursing and School of Dentistry faculty and students enhance and expand the centers’ services, in part by helping to provide a “one-stop shop” for primary health care, including dental care.

Meeting the Needs of Underserved Youth

The AACN established its Exemplary Academic-Partnership Award in 2013 and received 19 nominations. Judges awarded their highest score to three partnerships. In addition to Elev8, the AACN also recognized The Ohio State University College of Nursing and The Ohio State University Health System, and University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing and Penn Medicine Health System.

“It is thrilling to receive this recognition from AACN for a partnership whose main goal is to achieve health and educational equity for underserved communities in Oakland,” says Naomi Schapiro, who directs the Elev8 program for the School. “Our co-recipient, the Alameda County Center for Healthy Schools and Communities, is an amazing multidisciplinary group that supports 26 school health centers, including the five Elev8 sites in Oakland. We were supported in building this partnership by a grant from Atlantic Philanthropies, but we could not even have begun without the long-standing clinical and training relationships we have with Native American [Health Center], La Clínica and LifeLong [Medical Care], three wonderful community clinics that run the Elev8 school health centers.”

“We are proud of the community partnership, the interprofessional approach with nursing and dentistry, and the expansion of advanced practice nursing in the school setting to address health promotion for children and adolescents in underserved communities,” says Vlahov. “We are delighted to receive this recognition for what is a model program.”