Preparing currently employed public health nurses for changes in the health system.
OBJECTIVES: This article describes a core public health nursing curriculum, part of a larger project designed to identify the skills needed by practicing public health workers if they are to successfully fill roles in the current and emerging public health system. METHODS: Two focus groups of key informants, representing state and local public health nursing practice, public health nursing education, organizations interested in public health and nursing education, federal agencies, and academia, synthesized material from multiple sources and outlined the key content for a continuing education curriculum appropriate to the current public health nursing workforce. RESULTS: The skills identified as most needed were those required for analyzing data, practicing epidemiology, measuring health status and organizational change, connecting people to organizations, bringing about change in organizations, building strength in diversity, conducting population-based intervention, building coalitions, strengthening environmental health, developing interdisciplinary teams, developing and advocating policy, evaluating programs, and devising approaches to quality improvement. CONCLUSIONS: Collaboration between public health nursing practice and education and partnerships with other public health agencies will be essential for public health nurses to achieve the required skills to enhance public health infrastructure. (+info)
Knowledge of pressure ulcers by undergraduate nursing students in Brazil.
The purpose of this study was to examine Brazilian nursing students knowledge of pressure ulcers. Third- and fourth-year undergraduate baccalaureate students at a public university in Brazil (N = 83) were asked to provide demographic information, identify extracurricular activities (eg, reading journals and articles and using the Internet to enhance comprehension of pressure ulcer care), and complete the Pressure Ulcer Knowledge Test. Students correctly answered 67.7% of the Pressure Ulcer Knowledge Test items. Students who participated in extracurricular activities and used the Internet had significantly higher Knowledge Test scores than those who did not. Readings did not significantly impact the Knowledge Test score. Generally, the students were found to have low pressure ulcer knowledge, but that educational programs and the Internet have the potential to positively impact nursing students knowledge of pressure ulcers. (+info)
Intensive education combined with low tech ergonomic intervention does not prevent low back pain in nurses.
AIMS: To evaluate the effectiveness of an intensive educational and low-tech ergonomic intervention programme aimed at reducing low back pain (LBP) among home care nurses and nurses' aids. METHODS: In 1999, 345 home care nurses and nurses' aids in four Danish municipalities were studied. Participants in two municipalities constituted the intervention group and participants in the other two served as the control group. In the intervention group, participants were divided into small groups, each of which was assigned one specially trained instructor. During weekly meetings participants were educated in body mechanics, patient transfer, and lifting techniques, and use of low-tech ergonomic aids. In the control group, participants attended a one time only three hour instructional meeting. Information on LBP was collected using the Standardised Nordic Questionnaire supplemented with information on number of episodes of LBP and care seeking due to LBP during the past year. RESULTS: A total of 309 nurses and nurses' aids returned the questionnaire at baseline and 255 at follow up in August 2001. At follow up, no significant differences were found between the two groups for any of the LBP variables, and both groups thought that education in patient transfer techniques had been helpful. Within group changes in LBP status was not related to the intervention or to satisfaction with participating in the project. CONCLUSIONS: Intensive weekly education in body mechanics, patient transfer techniques, and use of low-tech ergonomic equipment was not superior to a one time only three hour instructional meeting for home care nurses and nurses' aids. (+info)
Undergraduate nursing students' compatibility with the nursing profession.
BACKGROUND: The high rate of attrition among nursing students has caused some nursing leaders to think about the necessity of considering students' personality during the process of admission into nursing schools. Due to the lack of studies on Iranian nursing students' personality traits, this study was designed to assess freshmen nursing students' personality characteristics and their compatibility with the demands of the nursing profession. METHODS: A descriptive study was conducted at Tehran and kashan medical universities and one of the branches of Azad University. Convenience sampling was used and 52 freshmen nursing students were assessed using Holland's Vocational Interests Inventory. RESULTS: From the total participants 63.5% were females and 36.5% were males. Based on the Holland's Vocational Interests Inventory 44% did not have appropriate personality characteristics for the nursing profession. 77% of the nursing students participating in the study reported that they lacked information about nursing. CONCLUSION: It seems that personality tests can help to select the best students for nursing schools from those who show good academic capabilities. This would decrease the rate of attrition and could improve the quality of care. (+info)
Evaluating teaching effectiveness in nursing education: an Iranian perspective.
BACKGROUND: The main objective of this study was to determine the perceptions of Iranian nurse educators and students regarding the evaluation of teaching effectiveness in university-based programs. METHODS: An exploratory descriptive design was employed. 143 nurse educators in nursing faculties from the three universities in Tehran, 40 undergraduate, and 30 graduate students from Tehran University composed the study sample. In addition, deans from the three nursing faculties were interviewed. A researcher-developed questionnaire was used to determine the perceptions of both faculty and students about evaluating the teaching effectiveness of nurse educators, and an interview guide was employed to elicit the views of deans of faculties of nursing regarding evaluation policies and procedures. Data were analyzed using parametric and nonparametric statistics to identify similarities and differences in perceptions within the Iranian nurse educator group and the student group, and between these two groups of respondents. RESULTS: While faculty evaluation has always been a major part of university based nursing programs, faculty evaluation must be approached more analytically, objectively, and comprehensively to ensure that all nursing educators receive the fairest treatment possible and that the teaching-learning process is enhanced. CONCLUSION: Educators and students stressed that systematic and continuous evaluation as well as staff development should be the primary goals for the faculty evaluation process. The ultimate goals is the improvement of teaching by nurse educators. (+info)
EN to RN: the transition experience pre- and post-graduation.
INTRODUCTION: The context for this study is a conversion program for enrolled nurses (ENs) or division 2 level nurses who want to further their career as a registered nurse (RN) or division 1 nurse. While the conversion program is available to both metropolitan and rural nurses, it is designed specifically for experienced rural ENs. The conversion program is able to offer an educational alternative that does not disrupt family life or adversely impact the rural nursing workforce. This alternative is necessary for both the rural EN's career opportunities and for the health outcomes of rural communities in particular. This article reports on the experiences of the first cohort to graduate from the EN to RN conversion program. The conversion program offers three semesters of advanced standing within a seven-semester Bachelor of Science (Nursing) degree. The advanced standing or recognition of prior learning is awarded to applicants with more than one year's clinical experience, regardless of the type of enrolled nurse course completed. Enrolled nurses with a technical college qualification or higher meet university entry criterion but students from a hospital-based program are required to complete a mature-age university entry test. The degree to which the three semesters of advanced standing within an external conversion course for ENs would adversely affect participants' transition to student status and course completion is not known. The conversion program: The two-year, fully external EN conversion program relies on learning centre partnerships with country hospitals and agencies. Teaching strategies consist of a mix of external-mode strategies, including fully web-based units, and a compulsory eight-day on-campus foundation study block at the beginning. The compulsory study block provides the opportunity for students to familiarize themselves with the various areas of the university they need to contact as an external student, prepare for expectations of their first unit, including assessment expectations, and to practise selected nursing skills that are not common to the EN role. With the program being delivered from the metropolitan area of a vast state that occupies one-third of the Australian landmass, a key feature is the establishment of rural learning centres to support students. Apart from two of the seven clinical units in their course, the designated rural academic mentors arrange clinical placements in school-approved health care agencies situated locally or in nearby towns. This later strategy avoids the necessity for students to relocate to the metropolitan area or larger towns to complete the clinical component of the course. The conversion program has enrolled a limited number each year since 2000 and continues to be in high demand. Rural ENs are given preference and metropolitan enrolled nurses are included when quota allows. PURPOSE: The purpose of this article is to describe the two aspects of the transition experiences of graduates from an external conversion degree. First, their transition experience from experienced enrolled nurse to undergraduate student and, second, from graduate to novice RN. PARTICIPANTS: Participants were volunteer graduates from the Bachelor of Science (Nursing) two-year conversion degree. The 10 study participants were mature-age females, aged between 33 and 53 years (mean = 42 years). Five were from rural areas. Their educational background included hospital-based diploma or technical college certificate. METHOD: Data were collected using open-ended questions in semi-structured interviews. The interviews were transcribed and thematic analyses of the data were undertaken. Major categories were identified and relationships among them detailed. RESULTS: The four categories identified included adjusting to higher education, achieving academically, becoming critical thinkers and adjusting to the RN role: accepting responsibility. Participant responses in this study have highlighted the necessity for timely responses to email, feedback on assignments and more mentor support for rural students during the course. Participants report changing the way they approached their nursing practice. CONCLUSIONS: The transition experiences for participants in the external conversion program are generally positive although, as with other studies, the transition to student status is stressful. However, the course is able to facilitate the career aspirations of the study participants and to contribute to the retention of nursing staff in rural areas. Strategies to provide career opportunities for health-care professionals in rural areas are always a challenge. As one such strategy, the external mode EN to RN conversion program has proven to be effective for experienced ENs. (+info)
Health Outcomes for Better Information and Care (HOBIC): integrating patient outcome information into nursing undergraduate curricula.
Nursing-sensitive outcomes provide common information across sectors, thus eliminating duplication that frequently occurs as individuals move across settings. These outcomes also facilitate increased trust among colleagues and support common understandings of patient care needs, thus enhancing continuity of care. Outcomes-oriented information is also likely to increase patient safety and improve overall quality of care. Shared standards and data support consistent decision-making, as nursing decisions can be tracked back over time to assess patient care outcomes. Consequently, nurses will have the means to determine the impact of their interventions on patient outcomes. At the same time, adoption of common approaches to patient assessment leads to greater professional accountability and moves nursing care from a task orientation to an outcomes focus. For administrators, such improvements in monitoring and evaluating patient outcomes translate into improvements in efficiencies and effectiveness, thus providing a return on investment in implementing these outcomes within their agency. For nurses, integration and utilization of outcomes information increases the visibility and significance of their decision-making and patient care. Together with patients, nurses can utilize the outcomes information to make evidence-based decisions and advocate for appropriate care. At an aggregate level, the use of outcomes information creates a continuous feedback loop that is essential to ensuring evidence-based care and the best possible patient outcomes, not only for individuals, but also for families, communities and populations. Outcomes-oriented care provides a gateway for transforming the way we care for patients; puts safe, ethical, high-quality care for patients first; embodies the principles of evidence-based practice; ensures that the value of nursing is clearly understood within the larger system; and ensures that the requirements for measurability and accountability can be achieved. This journey is continuous and is being expanded to engage all other health disciplines in understanding and documenting their contributions to patient care, both as individual practitioners and as members of a healthcare team. Preparing nursing students in an outcomes approach will facilitate systemwide adoption of HOBIC patient outcomes over time and provide a means to determine the impact of nursing care on our patients. (+info)
Case study: on the leading edge of new curricula concepts: systems and safety in nursing education.
The Nursing Division of the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology (SIAST) first included systems and patient safety as a priority in its institutional business and strategic plan in 2003. Three interrelated leading-edge, two-year projects (2004-2006) were launched: Best Practice, Mentorship and Patient Safety, with the intent that each project would enhance the others. This case study focuses on the work of the Patient Safety Project Team. The team developed a project framework and strategic plan, conducted a literature review and identified key concepts related to systems and patient safety. Strategies to integrate these concepts into the school's 15 nursing education programs are being implemented. (+info)