Mayor Adams Commemorates 5,000 Nurses Trained By Citywide Nurse Residency Program

October 24, 2023

New York City Mayor Eric Adams today celebrated a major milestone of 5,000 new registered nurses (RNs) trained through the Citywide Nurse Residency Program.

Since its launch in 2019, putting thousands of New Yorkers on the path to fulfilling, family-sustaining careers. As the nation’s first city-led nurse residency consortium, the program offers on-the-job training and other supports to recently graduated, newly hired RNs. It has been implemented at over 28 healthcare facilities across the city and supported hospitals in training and retaining nurses — saving them millions of dollars — while also helping new nurses succeed in their early careers. The program has helped average nurse retention exceed 96 percent year to date at participating NYC Health + Hospitals (H+H) campuses, far surpassing the national average of 84 percent.

This milestone marks the first stop on Mayor Adams’ “Working People’s Tour,” continuing to create jobs and power New York City’s economic recovery after the city set an all-time record with 4.7 million total jobs, recovering all of the nearly 1 million jobs lost during the COVID-19 pandemic. The program’s success also delivers on a delivering on a major health care component of Mayor Adams’ “Working People’s Agenda” to support 30,000 current and aspiring nurses over the next five years as they enter the nursing workforce, stay in the profession, and climb the career ladder.

“As we continue to grapple with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re doing everything we can to bolster our healthcare system, and that starts with supporting the backbone of the industry: our nurses,” said Mayor Adams. “By providing hospitals with the resources they need to train and retain their nursing staff, our Citywide Nurse Residency Program has allowed us to make significant strides in improving health care for New Yorkers and making New York City work for working people. As we saw in 2020, nurses are essential to keeping New Yorkers healthy, and our investment to help nurses go from the classrooms to a hospital room will help keep New Yorkers healthy and prepared for the future.”


“Nurses are often the first people you see and one of the last with whom you interact when visiting the hospital or an outpatient setting,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Anne Williams-Isom. “This residency program provides an important structure to support, attract, and retain the city’s nurses. Thank you to all our partners inside and outside government that make this work possible, and thank you to New York City’s nurses for supporting your fellow New Yorkers each and every day.”

“Nurses are the lifeblood of our hospital system. They helped restore and keep many more New Yorkers healthy and safe during one of the most perilous moments in our city’s history,” said Deputy Mayor for Housing, Economic Development, and Workforce Maria Torres-Springer. “As we celebrate recovering all jobs lost to the pandemic, there is no time more important to double down on our investments in the city’s human capital. The Citywide Nurse Residency program demonstrates the Adams administration’s commitment to this investment and to connecting New Yorkers to family-sustaining careers. I am honored to congratulate the 5,000-plus participants of the Citywide Nurse Residency program on a job well done.”

“In recent years, we have witnessed the extraordinary resilience of New York City nurses and the absolutely critical role they play in the well-being of New Yorkers and our city. The Citywide Nurse Residency Program not only values our nurses’ grit and tenacity, but also ensures supporting working nurses and their seamless transition from years of training into the workplace,” said Mayor’s Office of Talent and Workforce Development Executive Director Abby Jo Sigal. “Today’s milestone marking over 5,000 nurse residents to date shows how invested the city and this administration are in the health of New Yorkers, supporting our nurses and essential workers, and strengthening our city’s economy.”


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First-year retention of newly graduated nurses has been a historical challenge for health care systems across the country — only exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic — and residencies are a recognized best practice for improving nurse retention. Over 1,700 nurses in the 18 participating H+H campuses have completed the program since its launch, and the retention rate for nurses at these locations has increased by over 40 percent and surpassed the national average year to date. By reducing turnover rates and decreasing the costs associated with hiring and training new nurses, the program has saved private and public hospitals tens of millions of dollars.

An initiative of the New York Alliance for Careers in Healthcare and the Mayor’s Office of Talent and Workforce Development, and offered in partnership with the Greater New York Hospital Association, the Citywide Nurse Residency Program is proven to increase worker confidence, professional satisfaction, and retention. Stable, well-trained nursing professionals contribute to better patient care and reduce hospitals’ costs associated with recruitment, particularly in a time of acute nursing shortages after the COVID-19 pandemic.

The program is designed to last one year, consisting of monthly seminars and reflection time for a small cohort of first-time nurses from the same hospital — translating to better professional and emotional outcomes. The program also includes structured flexibility for hospitals to reinforce new nurses’ academic training and to customize training to a facility’s unique operational and cultural needs.

“The visionary Citywide Nurse Residency Program supported by the Adams administration and implemented by NYC Health + Hospitals has had an immense and immediate impact on nurse recruitment and retention, while at the same time saving our health system more than $42 million in recruitment cost avoidance,” said Natalia Cineas, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN, senior vice president and chief nursing executive, NYC Health + Hospitals. “Nursing is one of the most rewarding and satisfying of all professions, but we recognize that it also can be demanding and stressful for those just emerging from nursing school. Nurse residency programs are a nationally recognized best practice for retaining nurses, and our pioneering program provides the mentorship and professional practice training that newly graduated nurses need to be able to confidently and competently be responsible for the health, safety, and well-being of our patients.”

“Through thick and thin, New York City depends on our almost 80,000 registered nurses and hundreds of thousands of other health care professionals who show up for their patients every single day,” said Daniel Liss, senior advisor, Mayor’s Office of Talent and Workforce Development, Industry Partnerships; and executive director, New York Alliance for Careers in Healthcare. “We are incredibly proud of the early career nurses who participate in this program and the health care leaders across the city who make it a success — as the impact they make on our communities is immense. The Adams administration has made it a clear priority to invest in our city’s health care sector and its workforce, and the Citywide Nurse Residency Program is a great example of how the public and private sectors can work together to magnify our positive impact.”

“Health care is a human right, but not when there are not enough nurses to care for patients,” said New York City Council Member Lynn Schulman, chair, Committee on Health. “That is why the Citywide Nurse Residency Program, which provides career opportunities for New Yorkers and gives patients the essential care they need, is such a vital program. Today’s milestone of 5,000 newly registered nurses puts the city in the forefront of public health care.  Thank you to Mayor Eric Adams for initiating this important endeavor and for his stalwart commitment to the health outcomes of all who live, work and visit here.”

“The hospital community is grateful to New York City for developing the Citywide Nurse Residency Program, and to Mayor Adams for his strong continued support of it,” said Kenneth Raske, president, Greater New York Hospital Association (GNYHA). “This important program helps new graduate nurses transition to hospital-based nursing across 28 hospitals and has vastly improved nurses’ confidence, skill, and retention. GNYHA applauds the Citywide Nurse Residency Program’s positive impact on early career nurses and is proud to have been a part of its development.”

“Nurses are the backbone of every hospital, not only taking care of patients’ needs but also acting as liaison between the patients and the doctors,” said Gloria Middleton, president, Communication Workers of America Local 1180. “With a huge nurse staffing shortage in New York and nationwide, it is imperative that we continue to train and recruit as many new nurses as possible in order to have safe staffing levels at every hospital. We also need to ensure that all nurses are adequately compensated for the invaluable work they do every day to save lives and provide quality care to patients.”

“Nurses are the backbone of patient care. We are thrilled to be part of the Citywide Nurse Residency Program, which will support this essential profession,” said Ken Gibbs, president and CEO, Maimonides Health. “This program provides invaluable career experience for nurse graduates, positioning them for success.”

“Health care is one of the largest industries in New York and the retention of newly graduated nurses is critical to meeting employer demand,” said Kiersten Barnet, executive director, New York Jobs CEO Council. “The residencies offered by this program help nurses successfully transition into good jobs and employers attract and retain the talent they need. The Jobs Council looks forward to continuing to partner with the Mayor’s Office, Greater New York Hospital Assocation, and New York Alliance for Careers in Healthcare to bring more programs like this to life.”

“By investing in nurse residency programs, we invest in the health and well-being of our community,” said Beth Oliver, DNP, RN, FAAN, chief nurse executive, senior vice president, Mount Sinai Health System Cardiac Services. “Nurses are the heart of health care, and through this program, we ensure that this heart beats with compassion, expertise, and resilience. As we celebrate reaching over 5,000 early career nurses, we’re not just celebrating numbers, but the lives they will touch and the difference they will make.”

“I firmly believe the nurse residency program shaped me into the nurse I am today,” said Shari Lazar, RN, OBH, Brookdale Hospital and Medical Center. “The support and training I received throughout that first year taught me how to react properly and gave me the confidence to stand on my own in any situation.  It gave me the skills and fine-tuned my critical thinking to be a team player and react calmly in all medical emergencies no matter what comes my way. I am honored now to take those valuable lessons and share them with the new nurses that I am grateful to be training.”

“The Citywide Nurse Residency Program exemplifies our city’s unwavering dedication to supporting our health care workforce and improving patient care for every New Yorker,” said Wilhelmina Manzano, MA, RN, NEA-BC, group senior vice president and chief nursing executive, NewYork-Presbyterian. “We are proud to collaborate with this outstanding program and support new graduate nurses as they develop the knowledge and skills they need to succeed.”

“We are honored to celebrate with the New York City Mayor’s Office and the New York Alliance for Careers in Healthcare to recognize 5,000 nurses who completed the Vizient/AACN Nurse Residency Program™. Recognizing the unwavering commitment and ongoing pursuit of knowledge by these vital health care professionals is a noteworthy accomplishment, celebrating their dedication to delivering optimal patient care,” said Evy Olson, MSN, MBA, RN, vice president, Nursing Programs at Vizient. “Nurse residency programs are critical in helping newly licensed nurses transition into practice effectively, ultimately contributing to the well-being of the community, the health care organization, and the patients under their care.”

“The Nurse Residency Program provided structured support and opportunities for me as a new nurse,” said Wendy Zhao, MSN, staff nurse, at NYC Health + Hospitals, South Brooklyn Health and graduate of the Citywide Nurse Residency Program. “My team’s project poster won first place at the 2022 American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Magnet and Pathway to Excellence Conference. I entered the residency program as an associate’s degree nurse, and I emerged from it with my bachelor’s degree; this past summer, I completed my master’s degree in Nursing Education, receiving top nursing honors from the College of Nursing at SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University. The early encouragement and lessons in evidence-based practice and research from the residency program were major contributors to my success.”

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