Hi there to you all!
Here we are, in the first month of yet another year.
Talk of recession is in the air as I write these words but hope springs eternal, doesn’t it? I suspect most nurses would probably not be in this business if they didn’t have a strong belief in better tomorrows to start with.
New technologies and ideas continue to make headway into the old way of doing things in health care. An important report by the Canadian Nurses Association point at the community-based health care system of the future, at least as far as Canada is concerned. We cover that report in this newsletter.
Our Featured Article of the month focuses on the case of a fascinating "paradigm transfer" from the aviation industry - Crew Resource Management. We hope this cross-fertilization of ideas will help our nurses perform their jobs with more authority and confidence in clinical settings.
We are also happy to share the story of an angel among us, RN Sue Franke of Murrysville, PA. She exemplifies the kind of special person who chooses nursing as a career for life. Her life and passionate advocacy on behalf of the poor in a way redeems us all.
We also salute Dr. and RN Walsh of Chicago for completing a difficult 3-year medical mission to Uganda. Welcome home.
Hope to get together with you again next month.
Stay warm and be well,
Ugur Akinci, Ph.D.
Canadian Nurses Key to Community-Based Health Care by 2020
"Vision for Change," new report issued by Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) to mark the organization’s 100th year, foresees a future in which the Canadian health care system becomes a lot more community based, placing more emphasis on preventive medicine, and with a widened role for nurses.
The report forecasts the following major trends taking hold by year 2020:
As the elderly population in Canada expands, there’ll be more demand for curing "active, virulent illnesses and diseases of the aging such as arthritis and diabetes."
However, that increased demand will be offset by newer technologies (including robots) and advances in genetics. Plus, with an increased participation of the patients in the health care decision making system, the delivery of health care will shift from hospitals to community organizations and homes. Disease prevention at community level will take precedence over clinical cure and surgery.
The CNA report places a special importance on the role of nurses in the Canadian health care system of 2020, especially in delivering health care to far-flung rural populations in northern Canada.
CNA predicts Telehealth, which makes diagnosing illnesses possible from a distance through Internet plus audio and video technologies, will gain wider application and acceptance. Canadian nurses are forecast to spearhead the effort to expand Telehealth services to all communities across Canada.
Nursing Programs Popular in Australian Universities
Nursing continues to be one of the two top choices that high school students in Down Under make when applying to universities. Engineering is the other hot career choice for Australian youngsters these days.
Thanks to a shortage in the number engineers and nurses, there has been a 20% increase last year in engineering and nursing program applications.
University of Western Sydney, for example, is enjoying a 25% increase in applications to its nursing school, for the second year in a row.
RN Sue Franke - an Angel of Mercy
In this day and age of celebrity worshiping and financial greed some nurses continue to lead dignified lives devoted to helping others, as though inspired by another era (or planet).
Sue Franke of Murrysville, PA, a pediatric nursing instructor at Duquesne University’s School of Nursing and a bereavement support counselor, is one such noble soul.
She is the kind of person who cannot stand to watch homeless children eating out of garbage cans, or elderly without a shelter, food or fuel for winter.
Believing in the difference even a single person can make, Franke made it her mission in life to help those who are not helped by anybody else in her community.
Through her personal appeals to local organizations and celebrities, Franke succeeded to feed as many as 8,000 homeless people per week and collecting 100,000 teddy bears and other stuffed animals since 1990 to distribute as gifts to sick, abused, and homeless children. In 2001 she launched her own organization, Keep in Touch, to continue delivering food, clothing and loving care to the downtrodden and forgotten.
If you’d like to help, you can call Franke at 412-855-0599 or go to www.hugsandbears.com
To read more about Franke’s heart warming story please visit here.
Security Travel Advisory for Nurses Traveling to the USA
There have been a number of messages on various Internet sites lately warning non-American nurses traveling to the United States against carrying large amounts of cash or contraband items with them.
A number of nurses from countries like Philippines, for example, have reportedly been apprehended by U.S. Immigration and U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security officials and deported for that reason.
Nurses making entry into the United States are advised strongly against bringing cash over $10,000 or any large amount of cash with questionable origin, as well as pirated CDs, DVDs and books that violate Intellectual Property rights held by US publishers.
One message left on a nursing bulletin board reads: "If you know anyone going from the Philippines and coming back to the USA , with "pasalubongs" and "padalas," please read this important enclosed advisory from the American Embassy in Manila."
All foreign-national nurses are advised to check with the US embassies or consulates in their home country for an updated list of items that can create problem while entering the United States.
Doctor-Nurse Couple Complete 3-Year Voluntary Mission to Uganda
Dr. William Walsh and his wife, Kate Walsh, a Registered Nurse, completed a three year mission to Uganda as volunteers with the Los Angeles-based Mission Doctors.
The couple served in the poor rural community of Nyakibale, seven hours drive to the Ugandan capital Kampala. The village had a 160-bed hospital which also served as a school to train local nurses.
Among the challenges the couple had to face during their mission was the necessity of learning Ryunkore, one of the 53 local tribal languages spoken in the area. But still most of their daily transactions with the locals were carried out through interpreters.
The locals apparently could not make heads or tails of the Walshes who left the comfortable surroundings of their Chicago home behind just to help the Ugandan poor. They were called "mazungu" by the locals, meaning "white man."
"We were entertainment. It was like we were from Mars," Dr. Walsh is quoted by the Chicago Sun-Times.
The couple worked basically seven days a week and were on-call by default 24 hours a day, often without enough supplies and not even always clean linen for the operating room. Dr. Walsh performed "elective surgeries such as hernia repairs, splenectomies for people whose spleens were enlarged by malaria, and dealt with numerous bone infections."
The couple treated a wide variety of conditions ranging from burns and bone infections, to machete and knife wounds and similar others caused by leopard and hippo attacks.
The Walshes will be awarded the Sister Nancy Boyle Award for Excellence in February.
To read their full story, visit here.
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