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Goal #1

 Use innovative simulation-based modalities and technology to increase the capacity of RN to BSN students and the rural Appalachian RN workforce to work collaboratively across disciplines to improve population health outcomes in rural underserved areas. 

Goal #2

 Strengthen the capacity of the rural Appalachia nursing workforce to provide coordinated public health nursing care through telehealth for rural, underserved populations. 

eTHRIVE Community Partner: Remote Area Medical (RAM) RAM is a major nonprofit provider of free pop-up clinics. Its mission is to prevent pain and alleviate suffering by providing free, quality healthcare to those in need. Since RAM was founded in 1985, nearly 183,000 volunteers – comprised of professional practitioners, as well as general support staff – have treated more than 888,500 individuals delivering more than $181.5 million worth of free healthcare services.

The eTHRIVE project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under 1 U4EHP42431‐01‐00 and Nurse Education Practice Quality Retention Simulation Education Training grant. This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government.

Through a community-academic partnership, eTHRIVE has developed 4 evidenced-based innovative and interactive learning modules. The modules focus on public health competencies and telehealth with an emphasis on care provided in areas with limited access to care. Two different versions of each module were created to tailor to the needs of a student learner or nursing professional. Upon completion of each module, a certificate of completion is provided to the learner. As of May 1, 2023, over 400 learners have completed the modules and we welcome you to enhance your learning to improve the care provided to community members.

All 4 modules can be accessed and used for FREE by visiting the module section of this website. Please feel free to share in your nursing courses or with your healthcare organization.

Testimonials of the Synchronous Clinical Experiences


“…this interaction had the most impact on me and has left me thinking about my future nursing path.”

“…this was one of the most enjoyable, emotional, and fulfilling experiences I have ever had in my nursing career.”

“If I could describe this experience in two words, I would say it is life-changing because it’s opened my eyes to the community
. . . these are my people.”

“The speakers for the eThrive grant have significantly impacted our nursing students and shown them the heart of nursing: the power of fusing nursing science with compassion. Their stories and experiences have given our students renewed hope for the future and demonstrated how their work could make a positive difference in the world.”

I feel that it is important for RN’s to learn about serving the communities that public health nursing deals with. It was enlightening learning about the communities where patients reside and how it affects their health overall.”

“It is important for nurses to understand that not all nursing happens in a hospital or MD office setting. People need public health nurses, and we need to understand better how we can help our patients.”

“I have learned much more about the scope of PHN and how beneficial it is to the overall health outcomes of the community served.”

RAM: June 25th 2022 Bearden Clinic

“The RAM clinic is a wonderful service to provide care to those in need.”

RAM: June 25th 2022 Bearden Clinic

“I truly enjoyed this experience. It was very enlightening, and I hope to be able to volunteer with RAM again in the future.”

“Although it was required for our clinical hours, I really did enjoy and learn from this experience. This was not what I was expecting. I was ready for a cheesy, scripted experience. I was pleasantly surprised to find I was wrong.”

“I liked focusing on the community/environmental assessment as well as the physical assessment because I am very weak in these areas as a nurse, so it is a very eye opening process.”

“I would like to compliment how smoothly the entire simulation went. From start to finish I felt as if it went smoothly, especially for this being one of the first virtual simulations. The actors for the scenarios were a great pick and they should definitely be sought after for future scenarios.”

This is an amazing program, when other RN-BSN students speak about their program and curriculum it casts a stark contrast UTK, no one can hold a candle to you guys :)”

“Before completing the simulation I was thinking it would be kind of a waste of time. But while being involved it really opens your eyes to the multifaceted needs of our patients and gave insight into thinking about while being compliant may be difficult for some patients.”

“I definitely feel like it helped me apply the skills I have been learning in the RN to BSN program so far. It has been my favorite thing about this program so far! As a visual/hands-on learner I get so much more out of activities like this compared to just reading a textbook. It was also great to see my instructors and class mates in person & interact with them.”

I thought the simulation went very well, I felt I was given the proper tools to succeed. The flexibility offered by Dr. Davenport, Dr. Green-Laughlin, and Simulation coordinator Susan Hebert, was paramount to the success of the simulation.”

I appreciate the simulation scenarios as it provided a controlled environment to apply communication, education, and assessment skills in a potential real-life situation. The scenarios allowed me to interview simulated patients and opened up opportunities for learning and improvement.”

“I will be able to take many things that I learned in this clinic and apply it into my nursing practice.”

“The logistics and adjustments were good to witness for any RN that could be acting as a supervisor or lead position.”

“I enjoyed getting to have a hands on clinical experience, especially in an area that I do not work in full-time.”

“The instructors were all very interactive and supportive.”

Very well designed -debriefs were ran well -mitch was great as butch – more of these than the online modules please – made me think on my feet and felt more realistic.”

“The instructors made it very student-friendly, with clear instructions, positive experience.”

“Each area was beneficial to the public/global health course and I was able to apply it to my learning.”

“I enjoyed the simulations. I enjoyed being interactive with the other students.”

“I thought this was a great opportunity and felt no deficit in being online versus in person. The actors were very realistic and it was easy to picture myself in a real life scenario similar to the situations.”