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These are three orientation tools for nurses new to Public Health for orientation to three broad program areas in this local health department: 1) Communicable Disease Control and Immunization, 2) Maternal Child Health, and 3) Clinical Services. They are based on the national Public Health Nurse (PHN) Competencies model published by the Quad Council of Nursing in April 2003. That model addresses knowledge, skills, and attitudes in eight domains of public health nursing practice. These orientation tools were developed at Jefferson County Department of Health and Environment in Jefferson County, Colorado, from 2005-2006, by a team of Public Health Nurse Supervisors led by Christine Schmidt, RN, MS, for her Management Excellence Program capstone project. They are currently in use as a base for developing statewide templates for new PHNs in Colorado.
The tools are used by new PHNs to self-score their progress in learning their new role using ratings of awareness, knowledge, or proficiency. Along with supervisor guidance, the Quad Council of Nursing document is used as resource for understanding the tool. In addition, definition and evaluation keys are printed on the tool. The scoring is then reviewed in quarterly evaluation meetings with the supervisor for assessing progress and developing goals for growth.