LSU Health New Orleans Newsroom

LSU Health School of Nursing 1st Fellowship Program Selected by National Learning Collaborative to Improve Care for Medically Underserved

November 1, 2021

NP listening to baby's heart

The Nurse Practitioner (NP) Fellowship Program created by LSU Health New Orleans School of Nursing is the first nursing program selected by the National Health Center Training and Technical Assistance Partners to participate in the Postgraduate Nurse Practitioner Fellowship and Residency Programs Learning Collaborative. The six-month participatory learning experience is funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration and hosted by Community Health Center, Inc. The Collaborative is designed to provide transformational strategies and coaching support to help Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) implement postgraduate residency or fellowship programs for nurse practitioners.p programs for nurse practitioners.

According to Community Health Center, Inc., FQHCs are the health care home for more than 27 million people in the US, and their primary care providers must be specialists in primary care for vulnerable populations. Nurse practitioners are critically important providers in FQHCs, but have had to assume their roles in primary care without the benefit of formal postgraduate residency training programs to support the transition from new nurse practitioner to expert provider.

LSU Health New Orleans’ Nurse Practitioner Fellowship Program is a 12-month postgraduate transition-to-practice program for NPs transitioning to a new clinical practice. The focus of the fellowship is on the development of proficiency in the advanced nursing care of medically underserved populations and health systems leadership.

“I am pleased that our very new NP Fellowship program was selected to participate in this national learning collaborative,” said Leanne Fowler, DNP, MBA, APRN, AGACNP-BC, CNE, Director, Nurse Practitioner Programs at LSU Health New Orleans School of Nursing. “The Collaborative will develop our faculty with the knowledge and skills needed to offer community-based clinical partners with a clear process of establishing a postgraduate transition-to-practice program to support NPs new to primary care practice with medically underserved communities.”

Each participating Learning Collaborative partner will identify a team, organization leadership representation and a designated coach to lead the team through the work of the Collaborative.

“We are the first and only School of Nursing chosen to participate to date,” adds Dr. Fowler. “Because of the strong partnerships our NP Program has made with several community-based health centers and partners, we will be able to take what we learn from this collaborative and support the integration of these programs into multiple clinical sites. Traditionally, the learning collaborative only included participants directly from an FQHC. Collaborating with a School of Nursing may offer a larger impact by spreading their processes into multiple clinical agencies. I am looking forward to evaluating the impact this relationship has upon our community partners.”

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________ LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans (LSU Health New Orleans) educates Louisiana's health care professionals. The state's health sciences university leader, LSU Health New Orleans includes a School of Medicine with branch campuses in Baton Rouge and Lafayette, the state's only School of Dentistry, Louisiana's only public School of Public Health, and Schools of Allied Health Professions, Nursing, and Graduate Studies. LSU Health New Orleans faculty take care of patients in public and private hospitals and clinics throughout the region. In the vanguard of biosciences research, the LSU Health New Orleans research enterprise generates jobs and enormous annual economic impact. LSU Health New Orleans faculty have made lifesaving discoveries and continue to work to prevent, advance treatment or cure disease. To learn more, visit,, or

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