The StaRN Behavioral Health Nurse Specialty Program is a unique educational opportunity to meet a critical need for Behavioral Health Nurses. It is innovatively designed to provide intense post graduate training for newly licensed nurses. The paid 14-week program combines blended learning with Didactic, Skills Practice, Case Studies, eLearning, and Clinical Preceptorship in the Behavioral Health Nursing Unit of the sponsoring hospital. Upon completion, the newly licensed nurses are equipped with the knowledge and skill set typically found in a more experienced staff nurse.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What does StaRN stand for?

The acronym StaRN stands for “Specialty Training Apprenticeship for Registered Nurses.”

What is the program comprised of?

The program is comprised of seven weeks of medical surgical training, followed by a one week/five days/40 hours of a comprehensive Behavioral Health Educational Program. This Week Seven Behavioral Health Week includes didactic training, case studies, hands-on skills practice, eLearning, along with a 6 week clinical preceptorship at the sponsoring hospital. The newly licensed nurse is oriented to the hospital in which he or she will be working, and is better prepared for a standard patient assignment upon successful completion of the program.

What is the program content?

The program is based on the national standards of Psychiatric Nursing. Facility-specific training initiatives will be incorporated into this comprehensive training program as well. Learners will be BLS, ACLS, and CPI certified. Learners will also be introduced and trained on the Facility Electronic Health Record by HealthTrust, along with the facility education team.

When do the learners become hospital employees?

All learners will transition to the facilities payroll following successful completion of the StaRN Behavioral Health Comprehensive Training Program.

How long does the program last?

The program length is 14 weeks. The first seven (7) weeks includes a combination of didactic education, online learning, and hands-on clinical training in the Medical Surgical Telemetry StaRN Program. Week Eight (8) provides a 5 day/40 hour comprehensive Behavioral Health Training Program, followed by the 6 weeks of clinical preceptorship, with an experienced clinical preceptor from the hiring hospital.

How will learner hours be classified for productivity purposes?

All learners will be on HealthTrust’s payroll for the duration of the 14 week training. At time of completion, the learners will be transferred to the sponsoring hospital payroll.

Are the nurses paid during the training?

Yes, learners are paid an hourly training wage during the 14 week program. Learners are categorized as non-exempt, temporary HealthTrust employees during the program.

What is expected of the learner during the StaRN Behavioral Health Nurse Specialty Program?

All learners are required to be present and on-time for EVERY day of didactic, hands-on skills/training and preceptorship. There is a significant amount of instruction provided each day, and there is no opportunity for “make up” days in the StaRN Behavioral Health Nurse Specialty Program. The learner is expected to come to class daily prepared with laptop, stethoscope, professionally dressed with an engaged, positive, and courteous attitude.

What is the schedule of the Week Eightn/Five Day/40 Hour StaRN Behavioral Health Program?

The schedule may vary slightly depending on market request, timing and resource demands. The Week Seven Behavioral Health Training includes the following topics:

  • Behavioral Health Meditech Training
  • Trauma-Informed Care; Establishing a Therapeutic Milieu
  • Mental Health Diagnosis, Treatment, and Nursing Care
  • Psychotropic Medications, Side Effects, Patient Management
  • ANA Scope & Standards
  • Behavioral Health Core Measures and Safety Initiatives
  • Group Therapy Practice
  • Behavioral Health Skills Practice

The Six Week Clinical Preceptorship includes direct nursing care of the Behavioral Health Patients, along with the additional clinical experiences as listed below:

  • Three Phases of Group Session: Attend; Participate (Co-Facilitate); Facilitate (Complete separate Group Competency)
  • Attend a Treatment Team Meeting
  • Observe/pre & post care of ECT Session
  • Attend Hearing Session
  • Observe the Bert Emergency Response Team
  • Participation in Patient Observation (Patient Sitter/Safety Attendant)
  • Teach and verify competency regarding documentation (what to look for; behaviors observed)
  • Delineate Hours with Support Departments: Intake Department; utilization Review/Communication with Insurance Companies; Recreational Therapy/Occupational Therapy/Activity Director; Social Services; Nursing Assessment: Initial & Reassessment; Admission; Discharge

Who are the preceptors?

The preceptors are selected by the hiring manager at the sponsoring hospital. The preceptors must attend a preceptor orientation program sponsored by HealthTrust. The training is designed to introduce the preceptors to the StaRN Program, Content and Expectations during preceptorship. The learner and preceptor spend time together reviewing behavior, interpersonal, basic medical surgical knowledge, and basic math ability assessments that were completed by the learner on the first day of the program. They also complete True Colours™ training to help recognize and appreciate personality strengths and preferences of self and others, and improve communication for professional success.

Where will the training be conducted?

  • Didactic/Skills Classroom Instruction will be held at a centrally agreed upon location (facility training room, hotel, or college classroom)
  • Hands-On Clinical Preceptorship is held at the sponsoring hospital.

How are candidates selected?

The sourcing and recruiting of candidates will be the responsibility of the facility and recruitment team. Once interviewed and selected, HealthTrust will begin the on- boarding process to included background screen and license verification. The facility will complete the normal health information / requirement to include a Drug Screen and forward to HealthTrust when completed.

Do the learners pay for the program?

No. The hospital pays a placement fee that covers the cost of the StaRN Program for the learners.

Is there a facility commitment following the training?

The participating nurse will make a two-year commitment to work at the sponsor hospital. The newly licensed RN Learner will be obligated to repay a pro-rated portion of the educational costs should the learner break that commitment.

Does a candidates need to have their nursing license to enter the program?

Upon entering the StaRN Behavioral Health Nurse Specialty Program, the candidate MUST have obtained the RN License, prior to acceptance into the program.