Clinical Information & Policies
Uniform and Clinical Supplies
Information on uniforms is distributed to students prior to enrollment. Traditional BSN students must order uniforms no later than fall of the first year; Accelerated BSN students must order prior to arrival for their first semester. Students will need the full nursing uniform for enrollment in NURS 1020 in order to participate in the required clinical rotations. This uniform will be worn by the students during the clinical courses at the junior and senior level.
The student uniform consists of:
- Navy blue scrub top w/ embroidered Penn Nursing seal
- Navy blue scrub pants (or navy blue scrub skirt)
- Clean, non-porous shoes in a color that matches your uniform (e.g. navy, black, or white) must be worn. Dansko clogs with a back-strap or closed back are permitted; open back clogs are NOT allowed. You may choose to buy approved shoes from a vendor of your choice. You may also consider the Penn approved shoe vendor, Clove.
- When room temperatures necessitate extra warmth, students may wear an approved navy scrub jacket with the embroidered Penn Nursing seal or the lab coat. A name pin and arm patch/Penn Nursing seal must be visible during activities related to client care.
- Optional: Lab coat w/Penn Nursing patch
Our current uniform suppliers are:
Contact: Debbie Langer
Go to “Corporate Account Log-in”, click “UPENN Nursing School”, the password is pennrn
Give Me Five
Contact: Michael Sabo
Although you are required to purchase your uniform through one of our approved vendors, you may select the style of your top, pants, and lab coat from the approved styles. Both companies are familiar with Penn Nursing shoe and uniform requirements and will be able to help you if you have questions.
After each clinical, all students are required to wash their uniforms. Penn approved Nursing scrubs or a lab coat must be worn over neat street clothing (“business casual”) when entering the hospital or other agency, even at times when the student is not involved in direct patient care. The University of Pennsylvania badge and student name should be visible. Jeans, overalls, and painter’s pants are not suitable attire to be worn under the lab coat. Dangling earrings and rings with raised stones are not acceptable. A thin, gold or silver chain necklace may be worn. Hair should be neat and combed, not falling in the face to impair vision or interfere with clinical activity. In addition, students in clinical settings are not permitted to wear artificial nails, including acrylic nails, or facial piercing (e.g. tongue, nose, eyebrow, etc.).
Clinical Supplies and Equipment
Students should carry with them their own pens, notepaper, scissors, and stethoscope. Stethoscopes may be purchased from any vendor. The School of Nursing recommends the Littman Classic III SE for BSN students. Students are also required to have a watch with a second hand.
Please note: Only minimal cash or other valuables should be taken to an agency. These items should be carried on the person rather than in a coat pocket unless locked storage space is provided by the agency.
Travel to Clinical Sites
The School of Nursing utilizes a variety of clinical sites, some of which are at area hospitals such as HUP and CHOP, and some of which may require travel to the site via car or public transportation. Students are responsible for arranging their own transportation to and from the clinical site and for covering the cost of travel. The only exceptions are for selected labor and delivery sites (NURS 2150), selected psychiatric sites (NURS 2350), and home visits for Nursing in the Community (NURS 3820 for ABSN, NURS 3800 for BSN).
For these sites, students may be eligible to use their personal car or have the School of Nursing subsidize the price of Lyft. An eligible site is either one that is inaccessible by public transportation and/or sites where additional caution is advised by Penn Public Safety. If students will be using their personal car, the School of Nursing will reimburse the student for the mileage driven at the rate specified by the Penn Travel Office. Students are responsible for keeping an accurate log of all miles traveled. Falsifying travel mileage logs is grounds for a violation of the Code of Student Conduct. Students utilizing Lyft will be added to the Penn Nursing Lyft account and will receive a reduced rate. Students must travel in at least groups of two. Improper use of the Penn Nursing Lyft account is also a violation of the Code of Student Conduct.
Please note: When the University is closed for snow or weather emergencies, clinicals are canceled.
Nursing students do not have to obtain malpractice insurance before entering the first clinical, as the University insurance policy covers them during all course-related clinical experiences. However, students contemplating clinical employment must obtain their own malpractice coverage, as the University’s policy does not cover students in employment‑related situations.
Management of Needlesticks and Other Blood/Body Fluid Exposure for Students on Clinical Rotation
Body Fluid Exposure (BFE) Instructions for Students:
If you experience a Body Fluid Exposure while on a clinical rotation, immediately:
Body Fluid Exposure (BFE) Instructions for Clinical Supervisors*:
If a student under your supervision experiences a BFE,
*A “clinical supervisor” is the resource staff member who is most readily available to the student in the clinical setting. Depending on the program and setting, it can be an intern, attending physician, primary care unit group leader, clinical instructor, preceptor, etc.
Safe Conduct in Making Home Visits
Home visiting, as part of community health nursing care to patients in their own home, is an integral part of the curriculum of the School of Nursing. Current trends in health care provision reflect increased delivery of services outside the hospital. Students derive significant benefit from making home visits: enhanced interaction with patients and their families; opportunities to develop increasing independence in implementing nursing roles; and understanding of the role of the community in providing social and health services. Both the School and the students have important roles in providing safe experiences for nursing students in making home visits in the Philadelphia and surrounding areas.
|Role of the School|
The School of Nursing will provide an orientation to home visiting prior to the first student home visiting experience. This orientation will include education about safe conduct in making home visits, discussion of the leaflet “Suggestions for Safe Conduct,” and clarification of the student nursing role in the community. During the community health nursing course, students will participate in an extended orientation to their particular service neighborhood in order to familiarize themselves with that area and its resources.
School faculty will have regular communication with the clinical agencies to identify and minimize/eliminate potential sources of problems. Course faculty will also review the location of cases and/or specific neighborhoods with appropriate community agencies to ascertain the safety of making home visits in these locations. Clinical instructors supervising home visiting experiences will encourage feedback and discussion concerning potential safety problems with students in their clinical groups. Clinical experiences will be planned to enable students to make independent home visits with a student partner. Please refer to the section in this Handbook titled “Travel to Clinical Sites” regarding transportation to the homes.
|Role of the Student|
Students will participate in class and clinical discussions about safe conduct in making home visits. Written material will also be provided to them about safety practices, and students will seek clarification of any questions they have about applying any of the recommended practices. Students will be accountable to the faculty and each other in implementing safe-conduct practices while making home visits in the community. The concrete application of practices that facilitate safety while making home visits is considered an ongoing process involving both faculty and students. This process will be assisted by clear, open, and continuing communication between students and faculty about safety issues.
Standards for Professional Behavior in the Clinical Learning Environment
Clinical experiences at all levels of the BSN program present crucial opportunities for students to apply classroom learning and develop proficiency in caring for patients. Various aspects of clinical settings present myriad opportunities for learning that appear unexpectedly, but also pitfalls when students are unaware of expectations. Clinical work is also an area of the program where patient safety and well-being takes precedence over most other considerations.
The role of the clinical instructor, working intensively with small groups of students, is to facilitate sound educational experiences for the entire group of students to whom s/he is assigned.
The School of Nursing is responsible to students, the community and the various groups that regulate our programs to ensure that all students complete pre-established amounts of time in the approved clinical settings, and that they behave in a professional manner.
Professional conduct by all students and faculty members facilitates students’ learning opportunities, and fosters a strong working relationship between the School of Nursing and the various clinical agencies.
|3. Notification of Faculty Regarding Absences|
4. Use/possession of electronic equipment in the clinical setting
5. Use of clinical time
Failure to appear at the clinical placement site on time, appropriately attired, and prepared to deliver safe patient care, will lead to dismissal from the clinical setting. The clinical day will be made up, with the student paying the current rate of reimbursement for a clinical faculty member. In addition, the student’s advisor will be notified and documentation of the event will be placed in the student’s file.
In other cases of problematic student conduct, at the discretion of the Course Director, and potentially the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, a warning may be given to the student regarding the behavior in question, the behavior will be documented and potentially lead to a decrement in the student’s course grade and the student’s advisor will be advised. A second incidence of behavior of the same type may lead to removal from the clinical placement, with a requirement that the placement time be rescheduled at the student’s expense.
In the event of significant problematic student behavior, as determined by the Clinical Instructor or Course Director, the student may be immediately removed from the clinical setting. The observed problematic behavior will be discussed with the Course Director, and documented in the student’s academic record. The Office of Academic Affairs and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs may be included in discussions of how to address the problematic behavior, and what further action is necessary. In some instances, the student may not be allowed to return to the clinical setting.
As members of the professional community of learners, it is understood that clinical learning using simulation-based activities is a pedagogical approach to reach common goals of effective decision making, advancement of critical thinking skills and competency in psychomotor execution of skills. Simulation-based activities are an extension of clinical fieldwork experiences and contribute to students’ preparation for clinical practice and professional role performance. Within the Undergraduate Program of the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing, the Helene Fuld Pavilion for Innovative Learning and Simulation provides students with state-of-the-art technologies to perform clinical simulation. Simulation requirements are integrated into each of the clinical nursing courses and will contribute to the overall course grade.
Please refer to the Helene Fuld Pavilion for Innovative Learning and Simulation Policy Manual for the policies and procedures governing activities in the lab. Course-specific simulation lab requirements are included in each course syllabus; please refer to these syllabi for more details.
Licensure in Pennsylvania
The State Board of Nursing advises all students who wish to seek licensure in Pennsylvania that felonious acts related to controlled substances and drugs prohibit licensure in Pennsylvania, effective January 1, 1986. The Board is prohibited from granting a license or certificate to an applicant who has been convicted of a felony relating to controlled substances unless:
- At least ten years have elapsed from the date of conviction;
- The applicant satisfactorily demonstrates to the Board significant progress in personal rehabilitation since the conviction such that licensure should not create a substantial risk of further violations; and
- The applicant otherwise satisfies the qualifications contained in P.L. 235, No. 64, the Controlled Substance, Drug, Device, and Cosmetic Act of 1974.