Through the Veterans Affairs Nursing Academic Partnership (VANAP), baccalaureate nursing students and faculty participated in practice innovations in a Veterans Affairs Health Care System. Nationally, VANAP has attempted to bridge gaps between theory and practice and across care settings.
In a population health course, nursing students were placed in both inpatient and outpatient settings. Through activities such as postconferences and population-based projects, students joined forces with Veterans Affairs staff on issues that affected veterans' health care.
Two student groups worked on amputation prevention from opposite ends of the spectrum. Their projects, with the continuation of these by faculty and staff, resulted in 47% decrease in vascular-related hospital readmissions.
Student placements in settings across the care continuum improved communication between the settings. The enhanced partnership between the 2 organizations addressed a relevant, meaningful patient care issue.