A new healthcare nonprofit organization in Maryland recently launched to better address rural patients’ needs. IMBUEfoundation will provide care and transportation services to Maryland’s Eastern Shore communities, to improve residents’ options for care and lifestyle choices.
“IMBUEfoundation was established to eliminate the barriers that prevent people from accessing healthcare and living healthy lives,” founder Dr. Seun Ross said. “We are working to address obstacles like health literacy, transportation, and care coordination.”
Recent research by Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and NPR shows that receiving good healthcare is the second-biggest problem for rural American families. Major health concerns for rural Maryland residents include chronic disease, health literacy, care coordination, outreach and education, according to a 2017 assessment by the Maryland Rural Health Association. IMBUEfoundation notes on its site that the lack of services and coordinated care has led many Maryland residents to struggle in finding proper care.
“Healthcare is more than just going to the doctor,” Ross said. “For example, someone who lives in a place like Caroline County, which is both a food swamp and a food desert, is going to have a harder time making healthy food choices, which can lead to obesity— a major factor of chronic disease. It’s a domino effect.”
The new non-profit is helping those in need with nurse practitioners, acting as “clinical concierges” who provide counseling, monitoring, and stewardship activities. The nurse practitioners assist with coordinate care delivery for patients, explain healthcare plans and treatment options, and provide education on alternative care, in addition to other necessary tasks.
Modes of services provided by IMBUEfoundation include the Rural Health Collaborative, Care Coordination, and Transportation Service, in partnership with Lyft.
“From providing transportation to helping patients coordinate between doctors, IMBUEfoundation is working to make sure Maryland’s mid-shore residents have the resources they need to be healthy and happy,” Ross said. “But there’s still so much work to be done.”
For more information about IMBUEfoundation, visit imbuefoundation.org.
VA strives to deliver high-quality, compassionate health care to Veterans across America. We’ve taken great strides to ensure patients living in rural areas have access to a range of care options to best meet their health care needs. Due to VA’s recent “scope of practice” laws—which grant advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) full practice authority—certified nurse practitioners are stepping in to provide primary care to patients in rural areas.
Currently, nurse practitioners account for 1 in 4 medical providers in rural practices—a 43.2% increase from 2008 to 2016. Their advanced training and ability to diagnose and prescribe medicine enables more efficient, cost-effective health care delivery. Joyce Knestrick, president of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP), says “NPs are one of the most significant factors in expanding patient access to primary, acute and specialty care, especially at a time when demand is high and physicians remain concentrated in more urban and affluent areas.”
More and more, nurse practitioners are taking on a significant role in the health care of Veterans in rural areas. Their growing presence demonstrates the wealth of experience, growth and impact available to nurses interested in advancing their careers. Bring your nursing expertise to VA and discover a career in which your capabilities are utilized to the fullest extent—and consider a future serving our honorable Veterans living in rural areas. You’ll enjoy a satisfying quality of life unmatched by metropolitan areas, with all the same comprehensive benefits offered across the VA system. To get started, explore open positions near you and apply.
This story was originally posted on VAntage Point.
Stricken with kidney failure brought on by ALS – a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects voluntary muscle movements – Navy Veteran Richard Cole was told that his only option was relocating to a nursing home, where professionals could oversee his 24/7 health care needs. But he and his wife Yvette, who had no previous medical training, were determined to stop that from happening. So Yvette turned to the one person she thought might give them a fighting chance: her husband’s nurse, Pamela Wade.
Caring for Mr. Cole’s advanced ALS required hemodialysis, ventilators, and round-the-clock care, not typically-available options for in-home treatment. But after realizing how important it was to Richard that he go home, Nurse Wade began training his wife Yvette to care for her own husband on her own terms.
“There are certain criteria you have to pass to go home,” Wade said. “He didn’t fit any of them, but… I couldn’t say no.”
Two-and-a-half-years later, Yvette is still successfully managing her own husband’s treatment and the couple is doing great.
“Pam has been a godsend,” Yvette said. “I can’t say enough good things about her. I am just grateful she stepped in when she did.”
In working with the nation’s bravest patients, VA understands the great strength and toll that their service sometimes takes. That’s why we do everything we can to empower our nurses, doctors, technicians and administrators to adapt protocols and go ‘above and beyond,’ to care for our patients as much on their own terms as possible.
To explore open opportunities and your own empowered career with VA, visit www.vacareers.va.gov.
This story was originally posted on VAntage Point.
Work-life balance is a hot concept in the nursing profession. We hear we need it. We want to achieve it. But does it really exist?
That question has piqued the interest of Adele A. Webb, PhD, RN, FNAP, FAAN, senior academic director of workforce solutions at Capella University in Minneapolis.
“People think they need it,” she said. “But do they? Can you ever have it? Or are people chronically dissatisfied because it’s like a unicorn … they’re chasing something that doesn’t exist.”
Balance Vs Satisfaction
Webb plans to study and delve into the concept of work-life balance and nurses. She said recent conversations with nurse executives, including those at HealthLeaders Media 2017 CNO Exchange, left her realizing that the idea needs to be better defined.
“Years ago, I read an article called Balance is Bunk!, and [the point] was you never have 50% this and 50% that. Sometimes work takes more, sometimes family takes more,” she recalled.
For example, if a nurse must take off from work to stay home with a sick child, on that day, family needs more focus than work. And there are times, especially for those who work weekends or holidays, where work will eclipse family.
Still, Webb said she understands the desire behind the idea of work-life balance.
“What does work-life balance really mean? It means you’re happy. Well, what does happy mean? Happy means you’re satisfied with what you’re doing,” she said. “I think what people really want is life satisfaction. They can be satisfied at home and satisfied at work even if it’s not balanced.”
Another question Webb said she is pondering is, “How then do we address or encourage satisfaction and what does that mean?”
She said she has noticed, even among her own family, that different generations of nurses crave different things.
“I have a daughter and a granddaughter who are nurses. My granddaughter is definitely a Millennial. She’s 24, new in her career, and what she wants is opportunity,” Webb said. “She’s always reading, trying to better her skills, and to learn something new.”
This drive to further their skills and their careers is a trait often tied to the Millennial generation. However, it can also be a factor that contributes to their workplace turnover. According to the RN Work Project, almost 18% of newly licensed RNs leave their first employer within the first year.
“We have the job to educate these younger nurses on opportunities to find satisfaction in the job they’re in. So when you want more, you can sign up for a committee. You can look at policy in your community or state. There are opportunities outside of leaving your unit that can meet your needs,” Webb said.
“How exciting it would be for a young nurse to have the opportunity to be on the quality committee at a hospital. Or to have the opportunity to contribute to care algorithms or standards or care or policies?” she added. “They would learn [so much] from it [and] they could contribute so much.”
While baby boomers are more likely to stay in their positions, they, too, have a need for life satisfaction and often value time and self-fulfillment, said Webb.
For example, offering tuition assistance to pursue a master’s degree may give this generation a sense of satisfaction. Or they may find fulfillment in sharing the knowledge they’ve garnered over their years of experience.
“[Give them] the opportunity to be involved, and be on a budget committee at the hospital and understand the finances and the contributions they make,” Webb suggested. “Train them to be preceptors. Let them share that knowledge with the younger generation.”
Webb is in the early stages of reviewing published literature for existing information on work-life balance and satisfaction, and plans to interview nurses about their insights. Once she has a working thesis, she plans to connect with nursing professionals through presentations and conferences to see whether her definition and evaluation of work-life balance or work-life satisfaction rings true.
This story was originally posted on MedPage Today.
The University of Vermont Medical Center recently celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Midwifery Service, the second-oldest hospital-based midwifery program in the United States. Since the program’s start in 1968, more than 13,000 births have been managed by certified nurse-midwives, who have helped with nearly 20 percent of deliveries at the Burlington hospital.
Certified nurse-midwives assist with the maintenance of healthy pregnancies and provide education, counseling, prenatal care, hands-on assistance during labor and delivery, and postpartum support to mothers who opt-in for midwife care.
Marti Churchill, CNM, who is currently leading the program says that nurse-midwives are regularly sought after because studies show better outcomes associated with deliveries attended by nurse-midwives. “No pregnancy happens in a vacuum,” Churchill shared with the UVM Medical Center Newsroom. “We attend to the mother’s psychosocial and emotional health and assess how she takes care of herself, her access to healthy food, how is she treated in her workplace, her housing situation — everything that can have an impact on a positive outcome.”
The UVM Medical Center Midwifery Service was founded by Dr. John Maeck, chair of the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department at the Medical Center Hospital of Vermont, in tandem with Clair Lintilhac, a retired nurse and English-trained midwife. Lintilhac went on to provide financial support of the program once it expanded in 1978; that support has continued today through the Lintilhac Foundation. The Midwifery Service has continued to grow and include research sabbaticals, a lactation clinic, and a perinatal mental health service.
The program also includes a weekly Maternal Fetal Medicine clinic, which provides mothers with high-risk or complicated pregnancies to receive care from both midwives and physicians. Kelley McLean, MD, is medical director of the Midwifery Service and knows that their patients are hardpressed to find the same kind and quality of care elsewhere for their pregnancies.
“I’m not aware of any other clinic like it in the country,” McLean said. “It is great to see these patients benefitting from a range of expertise in an integrated fashion.”
For more information about the UVM Medical Center Midwifery Service, click here.
Two nurse scientists from the Naval Medical Center San Diego (NMCSD) recently received the 2018 RDML Mary F. Hall award for nursing publication. This highly acclaimed award was created to recognize the contributions to nursing made through professional publications.
This is the second year in a row that Cmdr. Wendy Cook, a Nurse Corps scientist and head of Nursing Research and Analysis at the Clinical Investigation department at NMSCD, has won the award for co-authoring “U.S. Military Service Members’ Reasons for Deciding to Participate in Health Research,” which was published on Research in Nursing and Health.
“It’s a great feeling,” Cook told Defense Visual Information Distribution Services (DVIDS). “I am delighted to have two separate publications recognized two years in a row, especially because I am aware of the high quality of the other nominated publications.”
Cmdr. Abigail Yablonsky, principal investigator for Naval Health Research Center’s Directorate for Military Population Health, is another recipient of the RDML Mary F. Hall award. Her publication, “Research, Readiness, and Military Parents,” which was published by the Defense Visual Information Distribution Service, won first place.
“Both Cmdr. Cook and Cmdr. Yablonsky have been wonderful to work with,” Capt. Heather King, Senior Nurse Researcher at NMSCD, shared with DVIDS. “They are dedicated nurse scientists who continually strive to create and disseminate new knowledge to benefit our NMSCD service members and beneficiaries.”
To read more about the NMCSD recipients of the 2018 RDML Mary F. Hall Award, click here. For more information about the Naval Medical Center San Diego, click here.