Thundermist Health Center Achieves National Accreditation for Fellowship Programs
First Nurse Practitioner Fellowship in Rhode Island to Earn Accreditation
(WEST WARWICK, RI – July 18, 2022) Thundermist Health Center achieved national accreditation of its Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Fellowship Program and Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Fellowship Program. The National Nurse Practitioner Residency and Fellowship Training Consortium (NNPRFTC) Accreditation Committee granted the program’s initial programmatic accreditation for the period of three years. Thundermist is the first organization in Rhode Island to earn national accreditation for Nurse Practitioner Fellowship programs.
Thundermist launched its Nurse Practitioner Fellowships in 2015 to help address the growing need of primary care providers and to better prepare providers to provide care in the community health center setting.
“Our organization has always recognized and valued the contributions of Nurse Practitioners as Primary Care and Psychiatric Mental Health Providers,” said Jeanne LaChance, President/CEO. “The shortage of Primary Care Providers and Psychiatric Mental Health prescribers urged us to think creatively and strategically about how to build upon workforce development, work life balance, education, and talent. Seeking and achieving national accreditation through the NNPRFTP further strengthens our commitment to creating satisfying and long-term career opportunities for Nurse Practitioners within community health centers.”
“The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the critical importance of the nursing profession in ensuring the health and well-being of our Rhode Island communities. Our programs two specialization tracks both meet our fellow’s career goals and our health centers’ needs in Primary Care and Psychiatric-Mental Health. The accreditation will further our efforts in developing our program’s ability to support achieving outstanding clinical quality outcomes, address social determinants of health and health inequity amongst the populations we serve.”
“Since 2015, Thundermist Health Center trained 20 primary care Nurse Practitioner Fellows and 10 psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Fellows,” said Milagros Colon Pilla, Program Manager, Nurse Practitioner Fellowships. “Sixteen of these graduates continue to provide care at our health center. This is a workforce development strategy that works and improves access to care for our community.”
The one-year fellowship program prepares new nurse practitioners to provide exceptional care to patients with complex medical, behavioral health, and social needs. The intensive training supports fellows in developing the skills to deliver comprehensive health care as leaders of a robust care team. They develop long-lasting skills to achieve outstanding clinical quality outcomes, address social determinants of health, and create health equity amongst the populations they serve. Fellows are required to work at Thundermist for one year following graduation.
“This accreditation is a testament to the program’s rigor, robust learning opportunities, and stellar precepting staff,” said Jessica Douglas, FNP-BC, Director of Thundermist Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Fellowship. “We are proud to be part of the solution to the shortage of Primary Care Providers and continue supporting the needs of our community.”
“This accreditation is the culmination of dedication, hard work and excellence among the fellowship leadership, staff, and all the Fellows.I am proud to say that the Thundermist Nurse Practitioner Fellowships are among the best in the country and two of the few accredited fellowships in the nation”, said Mary Rose, PMHNP, MS, CCM, Director of the Thundermist Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Fellowship.
Thundermist Health Center is a full-service primary care provider with dental and behavioral health services. The non-profit community health center aims to improve the health of patients and communities by delivering exceptional health care, removing barriers to that care, and advancing healthy lifestyles. Thundermist has locations in West Warwick, Woonsocket, and South County. The organization cares for patients regardless of insurance and ability to pay. In 2021, Thundermist cared for more than 52,000 patients. Learn more at www.thundermisthealth.org.