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Editorial: Nursing education gets boost throughout NM

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It took about four years, but the future of health care looks a bit brighter today for New Mexico – and it has nothing to do with the new federal health care law.

Last week, leaders of the New Mexico Nursing Education Consortium joined Gov. Susana Martinez in announcing that the state’s colleges and universities will soon standardize and streamline their clinical and academic training requirements for nursing students.

This common curriculum will allow nursing students to more easily transfer credits between New Mexico institutions of higher learning, without the fear of lost time and money for courses already taken.

Students who enter nursing programs at community colleges, whether in a remote rural school or at Albuquerque’s CNM, will still be able to get a two-year associate’s degree if that’s what they want, or they can more seamlessly transfer into one of the state’s four-year universities that offer nursing degrees and get their bachelor’s degree or higher.

This cooperative effort is expected to result in more nurses training while living within their communities, which in turn could help alleviate New Mexico’s shortage of primary care and family practice health care workers in rural areas if students remain in their hometowns after finishing school.

Good things can happen when agencies drop their self-protective instincts and work toward a solution.

This editorial first appeared in the Albuquerque Journal. It was written by members of the editorial board and is unsigned as it represents the opinion of the newspaper rather than the writers.

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