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NANB Board Responds to Poor Performance on Entry-to-Practice Exam

FREDERICTON, December 3, 2015- The Nurses Association of New
Brunswick (NANB) is a professional regulatory organization that exists to
protect the public and to support nurses by promoting and maintaining
standards for nursing education and practice, and by promoting healthy public
policy. Under the Nurses Act, NANB is legally responsible to protect the public
by regulating members of the nursing profession in New Brunswick.

Since introducing the NCLEX-RN exam in January 2015, there have been
approximately 400 exams issued in the province. Results for Anglophone and
Francophone New Brunswick nursing graduates continue to be disappointing,
significantly lower than our Atlantic counterparts and the lowest performance in
the country. In acknowledgement of the impact of the transition to a new exam
on many stakeholder groups; a special meeting has been called of the NANB
Board for early December.

“As a regulatory body for the nursing profession, we are mandated to ensure
nurses entering practice have the necessary knowledge and skills to practice
both safely and competently in the public’s interest,” says Laurie Janes,
Executive Director of the Nurses Association of New Brunswick. “Preliminary
provincial data is currently being analyzed and shared with nursing programs
as we initiate an action plan to work collaboratively through this transition
phase with all stakeholders.”

In 2012, three years prior to the first exam writing, communication with nursing
stakeholder groups was initiated. Different methods of communication were
used including: three NCLEX-RN information workshops developed for nurse
educators (Moncton/Fredericton/Halifax); regularly posted updates on the
NANB website (Communique), and presentations by NANB staff to graduating
student classes across the province. Presentations are scheduled by
contacting NANB offices.

Students can access a variety of resources to prepare for the NCLEX-RN
exam. Key resource documents for educators and students were identified in 2012.

Those documents are on the NANB website in both official languages.
As NANB receives student, educator, feedback further resources are
considered. As we continue to dialogue with students and families, and hear
messaging from other nursing organizations, it is apparent to NANB there is a
need to move towards a productive dialogue fostering solutions that assist
graduate nurses through this transition period for the new exam.

“As exam results continue to become available, the trend would indicate
improvements upon a 2nd write attempt of the exam,” says Janes. “Although
this is encouraging, we are sympathetic to those struggling to enter our
profession and want to take any action possible to support their success in
entry to practice while being mindful of our regulatory mandate for public

The NANB Board of Directors will convene for a special meeting in December
to review potential opportunities that may enhance graduate nurse success.

Click here for the original press release.