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Posts tagged ‘nursing education’

Advancing Primary Care in Haiti

The first group of family nurse practitioner students in Haiti

The first group of family nurse practitioner students in Haiti

This guest blog was written by Carol Roye, PhD, RN, FAAN, Professor of Nursing at Hunter College.

We’re making progress on rebuilding primary care in Haiti!

A group of Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing faculty went to Haiti in June 2010, after the earthquake.  Knowing that the School of Nursing in Port-au-Prince had collapsed, we went  to see how we could help the school.  What we found was a system of nursing education in disarray.  Nurses, in the public schools of nursing, have only a diploma level education.  Yet, nurses provide almost 90% of the health care in Haiti.  They do this without adequate education.

We created a non-profit organization, Promoting Health in Haiti, dedicated to improving nursing education in Haiti.  We saw a very clear need for nurse practitioners — nurses with advanced education in providing primary care.  It took a few years, but on Sept. 26 we began a Family Nurse Practitioner Master’s Program in Léogâne, Haiti.  We are providing classes at an existing 4-year nursing school, Faculté des Sciences Infirmières de l’Université Épiscopale d’Haïti à Léogâne (FSIL), which is supported by the Haiti Nursing Foundation.  This is a huge step forward for nursing in Haiti, and will bring health care to the Haitian people, most of whom have no access to care.

If you want to read more, or support this program, go to

Carol Roye, EdD, RN, CPNP, FAAN, Professor of Nursing, Hunter College, City University of New York

Narrative Writing for Health Care Professionals: Upcoming CE Events

We’re pleased to announce two upcoming continuing education events for nurses who are interested in writing reflective narratives. Both events are co-sponsored by the Center for Health, Media & Policy and Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing, Continuing Education, and are open to all nurses, nursing faculty, nurse researchers, and nursing students. All are welcome, regardless of prior experience with writing. Joy Jacobson and Jim Stubenrauch, co-founders of CHMP’s program in Narrative Writing for Health Care Professionals, will lead the events. (For more information on the instructors, please visit this page.)

The first event, Narratives of Diversity, is a one-day conference that will focus on issues of diversity and marginalization in nurses’ personal and professional lives, academia, and health care organizations. Participants will gain experience in using reflective writing as a way of processing emotionally charged events to reduce stress and burnout. We will also explore strategies for bringing a raised awareness of diversity and marginalization to one’s community, workplace, or school.

Deborah Washington, PhD, RN

Deborah Washington, PhD, RN

The keynote speaker will be Deborah Washington, PhD, RN, director of diversity for patient care services at Massachusetts General Hospital and a clinical instructor at the MGH Institute School of Nursing. In an interview, Dr. Washington said, “The advantage of working with a diverse workforce is that you work with people who understand specific cultures, beliefs, and attitudes. This translates into better patient care and a greater sense of satisfaction from patients and families with that care.”

The second event, Telling Stories, Discovering Voice: A Writing Weekend for Nurses, is a three-day retreat that will engage participants in an intensive process of reflective writing. We will use creative techniques to sharpen and enliven personal and professional writing, and through group feedback and discussion, participants will gain a new appreciation of the power of their own voices and new tools for sustaining a writing practice. The keynote speaker will be Karen Roush, MSN, RN, clinical managing editor at the American Journal of Nursing and founder of The Scholar’s Voice, through which she mentors writers in the health sciences.


Narratives of Diversity will be held on Tuesday, June 25, from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM
in the Faculty Dining Room at Hunter College (68th Street Campus)
695 Park Avenue, New York City.
Contact hours: 7
Fee: $150 before June 1st; $165 after June 1st; Students (with valid ID) $99
Group discount: $125/person available for groups of 6 or more from one institution.
Registration: By phone: 212.650.3850
On the Web:
Enter course code: NARDIV

Telling Stories, Discovering Voice: A Writing Weekend for Nurses will be held
Friday through Sunday, July 19-21 (Fri. 8:00-6:30; Sat. 8:00-5:00; Sun. 8:30-2:30)
at the Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing (Brookdale Campus)
425 E. 25th Street, New York City
Contact hours: 16.5
Fees and registration information to be announced.

Sleep Smarter, Nurses!

This guest post was written by Jasmin Zaman, a student at the Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing and the Macaulay Honors College at the City University of New York. Last fall Jasmin took a course in narrative writing for nursing students at Hunter taught by CHMP senior fellows Joy Jacobson and Jim Stubenrauch.

11:46 PM … 12:45 AM … 3:30 AM …

Here we go again. As I toss and turn I lose my hopes of getting eight hours of sleep. It’s Tuesday night. That means tomorrow morning I have to meet my classmates at the lobby of the Hunter dorms to make it to our 7:55 AM meeting for clinicals next door. We have our psychiatric rotations at Bellevue, and I am desperate to catch up on as much sleep as I can.

I was against caffeine when I first entered college but on Tuesday morning I haul my fatigued body to the nearby caffeine watering hole—Dunkin Donuts. My mother always warned me about the evil grasp of coffee and energy drinks, as she believed they were the culprits of my unexplained heart palpitations.

Nursing student Jasmin Zaman and friend

Nursing student Jasmin Zaman and friend

Suffering from insomnia is something I have come to accept. I share this constant battle with my classmates, and it is comforting to know I am not alone. We become so consumed by the day’s activities and by tomorrow’s schedule that it is almost bizarre to just stop—and sleep. Not sleeping the day before clinical days, especially, is a recipe for disaster. An internal disaster. My body fights itself to understand the cause of this sleep deprivation. Without the stimulant effects of coffee my body shuts down. I have often caught myself dozing off on the floor. But if I move into the maintenance phase of caffeination with stimulants like Red Bull or other energy drinks, I’m contributing to my sleeplessness throughout the night.

Studies have shown that the classic theory of sleeping one-third of the day does not correlate with feeling well-rested. Factors such as age and lifestyle contribute to the quality of sleep and feeling rested. It does not matter how much sleep you get, but rather the quality of it. Quality over quantity is best. Rapid eye movement, or REM, sleep, considered one of the most crucial stages of the sleep cycle, is “the only phase of sleep during which the brain is as active as it is when we are fully conscious, and seems to offer our brains the best chance to come up with new ideas and hone recently acquired skills,” says David Randall in a an op-ed, “Rethinking Sleep.”  Read more

And all this while giving medications too?

Ann Campbell, RN-BC, MPH is a hospice nurse at an inpatient palliative and hospice care program in New York, and is currently an NP student at Hunter Bellevue School of Nursing. She is a research associate for the CHMP.

In nursing, we often joke about needing a feeding tube or urinary catheter ourselves. In the 14-hour workday we are often so focused on patient needs that sometimes it’s a luxury to take a break for food or even use the bathroom.

Every nurse I know wants to help people; patients and their loved ones know this from firsthand experience. However, nurses function within the confines of a system driven by economic, political, and legal forces. The challenge to turn caring into policy can seem insurmountable.

As a public health policy masters student at Columbia University, the topic of nurses in leadership positions triggered a memorable discussion. One classmate, when asked if she thought a nurse could become a CEO of a hospital or other health care organization, responded with a resounding “no.”  Nurses lack the necessary clinical and leadership training, she argued. My classmate raised a provocative question; are nurses prepared to become leaders in the redesign of healthcare?

I believe that nurses are uniquely equipped to lead. In fact, a nurse now leads the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).  And many others are CEOs of health care organizations.

Nurses must have the necessary tools and knowledge to influence this complex system. Obviously, the nursing role has evolved dramatically since the days of Florence Nightingale. Modern nursing education deeply involves sciences, and benefits from accomplished theorists and instructors. There are several masters’ level degrees that prepare nurses for clinical, administrative, and educational leadership. Moreover, two doctoral level advanced degrees are available: the research-focused PhD and the clinical leadership DNP.

The clinical leadership Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) coursework has been refined by evidence from the Institute of Medicine (IOM) reports: To Err is Human: Building a Safer Health System (1999), Crossing the Quality Chasm (2001), and Health Professions Education: A Bridge to Quality (2003). DNP clinicians are trained in health policy, scientific underpinnings of practice, organizational/systemic leadership, analytics, health information technology, and interdisciplinary collaboration. These tools can be utilized to produce quality healthcare delivery models.

Development of the DNP curriculum has been so effective that the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) took a position in 2004 recommending that all APNs be doctorally-prepared. While this is what AACN wanted, the plan will not go into effect by 2015.

Despite this progress, nurses must prepare for the challenges ahead. This includes caring for the 32 million newly insured patients with implementation of the Affordable Care Act over the next 10 years as well as a rapidly aging population. An estimated 1.2 million new nurses are needed by 2020. It also includes developing a strategy for changing the mindset of those who do not understand the leadership capacity of nurses.

The IOM report on the Future of Nursing sets forth clear goals for nurses to lead in this dynamic environment:

  1. Practice to the fullest extent of the scope of their education and training
  2. Achieve higher levels of education and training through an improved education system that provides seamless progression
  3. Provide opportunities for nurses to assume leadership positions and to serve as full partners in healthcare redesign and improvement efforts
  4. Improve data collection for more effective workforce planning, information infrastructure, and policymaking

The implications for practice, research, and advocacy are extensive.  With the right education, nurses will lead innovative transformations in healthcare into the future.

Telling Nurses’ Stories: A Writing Weekend in NYC, July 20-22

Joy Jacobson is the CHMP’s poet-in-resdence. Follow her on Twitter: @joyjaco 

Senior fellow Jim Stubenrauch and I are offering, as a part of the CHMP’s program in Narrative Writing for Health Care Professionals, a weekend of writing for nurses. We’re cosponsoring the conference with the Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing and through them will be able to offer 16.5 continuing nursing education credits. The weekend will be open to nurses, nursing faculty, nurse researchers, and nursing students, giving them an opportunity to explore the power of narrative writing. We’ll write, read aloud, and create what we hope will be an ongoing community of new and experienced writers.

Our goals? Giving nurses new appreciation for their individual and collective voices and new tools for sustaining a writing practice—regardless of whether their writing is scholarly or creative. The cost for the weekend will be $675.

Click here for a detailed brochure and click here to register (under Course Category/Program on the left, click on NURSING and the course description for Telling Stories, Discovering Voice: A Writing Weekend for Nurses/SEMTSDV should appear; click on Show Detail & Register on the right* ).

Over three days, participants will work on writing stories that hold particular meaning for them. We’ll offer them one-on-one coaching sessions, as well as the option of submitting their writing for publication on this blog.

Karen Roush, MS, RN, will provide a keynote address and discussion. She brings extensive experience as a writer, teacher, and nurse to the Scholar’s Voice, where she helps health professionals, particularly nurses, become skilled, confident writers. She is the clinical managing editor of the American Journal of Nursing and a Mary Clark Rockefeller Fellow and PhD candidate in the College of Nursing at New York University. She has had numerous publications, including books, articles in scholarly journals, essays, and poems.

Special rates for attendees have been secured at New York Thompson LES, located at 190 Allen Street on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, not far from the Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing, where the weekend will take place.*

In addition to writing workshops, we will review the elements of a “healing narrative,” explore the role of narrative in medicine and nursing, and discuss social media as a public-health tool.

Please note that information about registration and hotel accommodations has been updated from an earlier version of this post.


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