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NH Delegation Applauds $3 Million Headed to Expand Nursing Program at Elliot Hospital in Manchester

(Washington, DC) - U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) joined Representatives Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Chris Pappas (NH-01) to applaud $3 million in grant funding from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) headed to expand the nursing program at Elliot Hospital in Manchester.

The grant will be allocated as part of the DOL’s Nursing Expansion Grant Program, which is designed to support nursing training programs to diversify the pipeline of nursing professionals and improve the nation’s healthcare system, with an emphasis on training people from historically marginalized and underrepresented populations to bring greater employment equity in underserved communities and improve healthcare workforce diversity.

“As workforce shortages continue to impact our health care systems in New Hampshire and across the nation, I’m thrilled to see $3 million in federal funding headed to our state to support increased medical training opportunities and expand the nursing program at Manchester’s Elliot Hospital,” said Senator Shaheen, a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee. “Strengthening nursing training programs is a crucial step to help close gaps in New Hampshire’s health care workforce that we still haven’t recovered from in the aftermath of the COVID pandemic. These resources are an important investment in ensuring Granite Staters have reliable access to comprehensive care when they need it most.”

“New Hampshire’s health care workforce shortage makes it harder for Granite Staters to access the care that they need, and it puts a real strain on nurses and doctors,” said Senator Hassan. “It is great news that Elliot Hospital is receiving funding to help train more nurses; and I will continue working to expand our health care workforce.”

“Nurses make high-quality health care possible for communities all across New Hampshire, and it is essential that we support them and invest in the next generation of qualified care professionals,” said Congresswoman Annie Kuster. “I’m thrilled to see this grant funding heading to our state to expand the workforce and strengthen our health care system for generations to come.”

“Nurses are a critical pillar of our health care workforce and work diligently every day to serve our communities and keep Granite Staters healthy,” said Congressman Chris Pappas. “This funding will expand our nursing programs to address staff shortages and ensure our health care workforce can meet the needs of their communities. I’ll continue to support investments that expand health care, increase the workforce, and aid the vital work nurses do.”

“Partnerships are essential to growing our nursing workforce, and ultimately, providing our communities with the healthcare they need now, and for generations to come. We are pleased to have made progress in building our skilled nursing workforce through partnerships with organizations in our community, and there is still much more work to do,” said Becky Marden, Director of Workforce Development and Experience for Elliot Health System. “We are grateful for these funds that will help to sustain our efforts. It takes a variety of organizations and individuals to nurture our workforce, and this support will make a large impact for our communities."

This grant funding will be utilized to support innovative partnerships and strategies that will:

  • Build a structured collaborative process to create clinical pathways (LNA to LPN to RN) by expanding educational and training opportunities;
  • Provide financial support to those individuals/staff to advance on a career pathway;
  • Create a standardized portable preceptor program to increase the number of preceptors available to mentor new nurses (currently limiting on-the-job training and clinical site capacity); and,
  • Expand and diversify Elliot Hospital’s nursing pipeline.

Senator Shaheen led efforts in Congress to secure critical funds to address the COVID crisis in New Hampshire, including joining a bipartisan push to fix discrepancies that caused small and rural states to receive significantly less funding for vaccines and testing than originally estimated. During negotiations surrounding the American Rescue Plan Act, Shaheen helped steer efforts to increase funding for the Provider Relief Fund (PRF) to ensure hospitals, nursing homes and other health care providers on the frontlines had the support they need to keep their doors open and continue to care for patients. Earlier this year, Shaheen and Congresswoman Kuster welcomed a $2,000,000 grant to New England College to help increase its capacity to educate and prepare highly trained nursing professionals. In March, Shaheen helped introduce bipartisan legislation that would help build a health care workforce in rural and medically underserved areas by allowing international doctors to stay and practice in the United States following the completion of their residency.