Dr. Ruiz and Dr. Buek smile for picture in nursing lab
Starting January 2020, nursing students will begin examining the medical needs of people who are incarcerated at the Ector County Detention Center

The University of Texas Permian Basin College of Nursing is expanding the scope of learning for students and positively impacting the community at the same time. Starting January 2020, nursing students will begin examining the medical needs of people who are incarcerated at the Ector County Detention Center.  

college-of-nursing-2.jpg“Correctional nursing is a specialtyGoing behind the walls of the jail and providing care to those who are detained is important work,” Dr. Donna Buek, Dean of the College of Nursing, said.  

Buek said it’s not common for students to get an opportunity to experience correctional nursing in school. In fact, this specialty has its own specified scope of practice under the American Nurses Association.  

“It’s important to the Permian Basin, to the region, and really the nation because we do have a growing population of people who are incarcerated and they have the same health issues that individuals have outside of jail.” 

22 UT Permian Basin students will be in the clinical rotation. Dr. Diana Ruiz, UTPB Community and Population Health professor, said it’s important for students to experience nursing outside of a hospital setting.  

“I think it will be a great learning experience for the students to really understand how you deliver compassionatesafe care to patients while they are incarcerated.” 

In addition to the new partnership with the Ector County Sheriff’s Office, the UT Permian Basin College of Nursing also has a new agreement with the City of Odessa.  

“Our students in this same course will do ride-alongs with code enforcement officers to be able to really see the issues that impact the health of an individual in a community.” 

The College of Nursing hopes by diversifying their clinical opportunities, students will understand what our community needs and will stay in the Basin to make an impact.  

“We will represent the University and the county to the best of our abilities to show that we are a caring institution, said Buek