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Metro Tech responds to Oklahoma’s nursing shortage

By Darla Shelden, City Sentinel Reporter —

OKLAHOMA CITY – As the state’s need for skilled health care workers is in high demand, Metro Tech is responding to meet the Oklahoma City’s shortage of nurses by offering a Nurse Refresher course.

“Maintaining flexibility in training is key to help individuals fill the workforce gap sooner,” the press release stated. “The nursing shortage is a call-to-action for all former registered nurses and licensed practical nurses to return to the field.”

Critical changes to the Nurse Refresher course allow health professionals to renew licenses, refresh their skills and take exams in one-half the time.

Metro Tech’s partnership with OU Health Sciences permits students to complete their online course training in under six months. Once course work is complete, students attend Metro Tech to complete the final 42 hours of lab skills. The option to participate in virtual clinicals is an innovative way to meet the criteria. 

“Our Nurse Refresher program is designed to get nurses back in the workplace by providing quality training through didactic and showing competency through lab skills and clinical, whether it’s through virtual means or in the clinical setting,” said Jay Decoteau, Adult Instructional Coordinator for health care courses at Metro Tech.

“In any of our health care programs, the hands-on training allows students to work alongside health care professionals in clinical settings,’ Decpteau continued. “They are able to apply the skills they’ve learned confidently.

Students can earn certifications that show the employer not only are they knowledgeable but have the skills required for patient care,” Decoteau said.

Metro Tech Superintendent and CEO Aaron Collins said, “Our health career programs have always been the source of immediate training at Metro Tech. Individuals and health care providers can be assured our programs follow state guidelines and protocols for thorough training using innovative technology.

“Our faculty are former health care professionals who truly care about the success of the student,” Collins added.

The Oklahoma CareerTech System announced mid-January that the shortage of nurses caused for immediate changes to the Nurse Refresher program.

Lara Morris, CareerTech’s Health Careers Education state program manager, said that the changes were needed “in order to streamline the process while saving students time and money.”

“We are specifically doing this in response to the COVID surge and the need for more nurses to be used at the bedside and replacing nurses who have moved from hospitals to clinics and other nursing positions,” Morris said.

Other health care courses offered to fill high demand positions include: Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA), Advanced Unlicensed Assistant (AUA), Certified Medication Aide (CMA), Phlebotomy. Surgical Technician, and Practical Nursing. 

Individuals can also find information about reinstating their LPN and RN licenses on the Oklahoma Board of Nursing website

February is National Career and Technical Education Month. As one of Oklahoma’s largest technology centers, Metro Technology Centers has four campuses offering short-term, career and customized business training.

Campuses are located in South Oklahoma City, Northeast Oklahoma City, the Will Rogers Airport and Downtown Oklahoma City. 

Information about Nurse Refresher or other health care courses can be found here, or by calling 405-595-4678. To learn more, visit metrotech.edu.   

In response to the high demand for skilled health care workers, Metro Tech is now offering a Nurse Refresher Course. Metro Tech video screen shot