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DeSantis awards $79 million to nursing education and health care programs

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The funding rewards public postsecondary nursing programs that have gone above and beyond to train Floridians and provides matching funds for scholarship awards, faculty recruitment, equipment and additional educational supports.

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday awarded $79 million for high-performing nursing education programs in Florida.

The funding rewards public postsecondary nursing programs that have gone above and beyond to train Floridians and provides matching funds for scholarship awards, faculty recruitment, equipment and additional educational supports.

“These awards will meet a critical need of our state by ensuring we continue to have high-quality nursing graduates and by creating new opportunities for Floridians interested in health care,” DeSantis said in a news release distributed by his office.

This funding will be distributed through Linking Industry to Nursing Education (LINE) and Prepping Institutions, Programs, Employers and Learners Through Incentives for Nursing Education (PIPELINE), programs created by the Legislature to mitigate Florida's nursing shortage.

LINE will receive $19 million for Florida College System institutions, school district postsecondary technical centers, charter technical centers, and independent nonprofit colleges or universities with necessary accreditation requirements, the governor’s office said.

The money may be used to award scholarships to students who meet in-state tuition residency requirements, recruit additional faculty, purchase equipment and support simulation centers to advance high-quality nursing education programs throughout Florida.

All eligible LINE applicants must also meet performance standards based on the prior year, including:

  • A completion rate of at least 70% for certified nursing assistant programs.
  • A first-time National Council of State Boards of Nursing Licensing Examination (NCLEX) passage rate of at least 70% for licensed practical nurse, and associate’s and bachelor’s nursing programs.

Institutions receiving LINE funding include: AdventHealth University, Seminole State College, Daytona State College, Nova Southeastern University, Indian River County School District, Polk State College, Jacksonville University, Valencia College, Santa Fe College, The College of the Florida Keys, Bethesda College of Health Sciences, Palm Beach Atlantic University, Hillsborough Community College, Southeastern University, St. Petersburg College, Broward College, Barry University, Northwest Florida State College, South Florida State College, State College of Florida-Manatee-Sarasota, Indian River State College, Florida Southern College, Tallahassee Community College, Miami Dade College, University of Miami, and College of Central Florida

The PIPELINE program receives $60 million to distribute to school districts with LPN programs ($20 million) and Florida College System institutions with LPN and registered nursing programs ($40 million).

PIPELINE performance funds are based on the following criteria:

  • The number of nursing education program completers, by program.
  • First-time NCLEX passage rate of the institution’s nursing education program completers, by program.
  • Excellence among nursing education programs with an average first-time NCLEX passage rate above the national average.
WQCS