UBC Publications

UBC Publications

UBC Publications

Touchpoints Oct 1, 2007

Item Metadata


JSON: touchpoints-1.0115961.json
JSON-LD: touchpoints-1.0115961-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): touchpoints-1.0115961-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: touchpoints-1.0115961-rdf.json
Turtle: touchpoints-1.0115961-turtle.txt
N-Triples: touchpoints-1.0115961-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: touchpoints-1.0115961-source.json
Full Text

Full Text

 July 2007
School of
Shaping Futures
1 Shaping Futures
2 Raising the Bar
Taking the Anxiety out of Sleeping
3 The Face of Research
The Search for Appropriate Treatment:
Making Informed Decisions
In Passing
UBC Nursing Pioneer Leaves her Legacy
4 Graduate Profile
Working with Story, Developing Policy
5 Undergraduate Profile
Love and Excitement for Education
Even Teddy Bears Practice
Good Hygiene
6 Career Reflections
7 Clinical Practice Innovation
Action at the Seniors' Home
Alumni Action
8 Teaching Innovation
Understanding Ethics
through Experience
Save-A-Tree® eco audit
Touchpoints is printed on Save-a-Tree® 100%
post-consumer waste paper.
Trees Saved: 4
"^^   Wood Saved (Lbs.): 2,457
If      Water Saved (gals.): 3,612
U      Landfill Reduced (Lbs.): 383
U       Net Greenhouse Emissions Reduced (Lbs.): 743
H       Energy Reduced (BTU) (000): 4,890
Dr. Sally Thorne
At the UBC School of Nursing, we take deep pride in our students. All
of our program admissions are highly competitive and students who
are successful in the admission process take that privilege seriously. As they
begin their programs, whether they be undergraduate students entering
the profession or registered nurses entering our master's, nurse practitioner
or doctoral programs, they take their place in the remarkable history of
the thousands of students who have walked our halls and gone on to make
the world a better place.
For the time that our students are with us, they
are immersed in a diverse array of learning
activities from clinical practice laboratories to
lecture halls, from research libraries to
community action projects, from space-age
information technology to timeless human
connection. In order to provide all of our
students with the expertise and guidance
they need in all of these diverse kinds
of learning, our faculty must be at the cutting
edge of expertise in an enormous range
of issues and techniques. Collectively, we
represent a community of experts,
each in his or her own way, of the complex
enormity of nursing knowledge.
We see in each student the kernel of capacity
that will go out into the world and become a
force for change into the future. Our task and
our privilege is to provide them with the
strongest educational base possible, enhanced
by an appreciation for the multifaceted
global health context into which their lives are
being drawn, and to arm them with an attitude
of confidence and inspiration that the part
they will play in solving the world's health
problems will make a meaningful difference.
And when each student marches across that
convocation stage to accept his or her
degree in nursing—rejoicing in that individual
accomplishment, and eyes shining bright
with excitement about taking those newly
honed skills out into the world of solving
health problems—we also express gratitude
for the collective triumph of the faculty and
the School, sustaining the fine tradition that
has meant so much to those who have
gone before. We invite our wider community—
our friends, our alumni, our former faculty
and staff and our collaborative partners—
to take pride in what we all represent and
to continue to support us in the wonderful
work of shaping futures. Raising the Bar
Taking the Anxiety out of Sleeping
Well-versed in interviews, media attention and talking about her work,
Dr. Wendy Hall, Associate Professor in the UBC School of Nursing
takes a break from her current studies to discuss sleep, mothers and babies.
Wendy works with colleagues in Australia and Canada on two different,
but connected, studies that not only inform each other but generate more
avenues of interest for the team members.
"I learned of a study in Australia being done
on mothers' fears of childbirth and whether
or not their fears contributed to their risks
for caesarean births," Wendy says. "I took the
central notion of childbirth fear from that
study by midwives and nurses and added
questions for expectant mothers about their
fatigue, anxiety level and sleep deprivation.
It became the Pregnant in BC study, with my
Australian colleagues as co-investigators,
which has received a lot of media interest."
Wendy currently has 700 expectant mothers
involved in the study. Because there is so
much emphasis placed on the risks and
challenges of childbirth, women are excited
to participate in and/or spread the word
about this study in the hopes of gaining
more data on women's perspectives of
childbirth. "We may find that women aren't
as anxious as others assume they are."
Through this Australian/Canadian relationship,
Wendy learned about behavioural interventions
used in Australia to reduce infant sleep
problems. Incorporating those approaches,
Wendy and nursing, medical and midwifery
colleagues finished a pilot study of a behavioural sleep intervention in Canada in 2004. "I
am one of only two nurses in Canada I
know of working in this area," she says, "and
I haven't been able to locate any studies
in Canada that have trialed this intervention."
Because many health care professionals
are not assisting with infant sleep problems in
Canada, and because the parenting literature
suggests that sleep is a huge issue, Wendy
receives many requests for media interviews
and for help from families as far away as
Nova Scotia.
The intervention used in the study consists
of assisting parents to understand infant
patterns over 24 hours: the timing of feedings,
naps, the length of naps, the settling behaviour
for naps and nighttime sleeping, and what
parents do when the infants signal. Parents
can be assisted to tailor the intervention to
their infants and families. "The struggle
isn't that one form of intervention, for example
scheduled waking, won't work, it's that
parents may have difficulty agreeing to that
element of the process or that it may not
be ecologically valid in terms of incorporating
the intervention into their lives," says Wendy.
There is extensive literature about infant
sleep problems, so it is not from a lack of
information that parents struggle with
their child's sleep patterns; it is the sheer
volume of information that makes it
difficult for parents to choose and understand
various methods. "My hope is that the interventions we intend to evaluate in a randomized
controlled trial will be incorporated into
community health nurse practice if they are
effective," says Wendy, hoping to increase
the cadre of experts at the community level.
It is estimated that 30 per cent of infants
in Canada have sleep issues. Some of these
children grow out of it and some don't.
Evidence suggests that children who don't
can have difficulties as pre-schoolers
with inattention, hyperactivity or aggressive
behaviour. "In our day care questionnaire
study with nursing, education and physiologist
co-investigators, we have found that both
the parents and the day care providers are
documenting behavioural issues for children
with sleep problems," says Wendy. "What
might happen to these children when they
reach school age?"
Wendy's vision is to promote optimal parenting
and child development. When asked why this
is so important, Wendy emphatically responds,
"I believe that parenting is one of the most
important roles that people take on over their
lifetimes and that parents deserve and need
support to make it the best experience for
them and their children that it can possibly be.
I see the area of sleep as essential to child
development and to parenting."
By developing international and interprofessional connections, faculty members like
Wendy can develop ways of addressing
challenges in various fields and positively
creating change in parents' lives. The Face of Research
The Search for Appropriate
Treatment: Making
Informed Decisions
Many people when they are sick
lose hope that they will get well,
or decide to try a different kind
of therapy, and so they turn
to treatments that are outside of
mainstream medicine. Often
these are termed complementary or
alternative medicine (CAM).
"Complementary medicine, like guided imagery
for example, refers to therapies that patients
use in conjunction with conventional medicine,"
says Dr. Lynda Balneaves, Assistant Professor
in the School of Nursing, whose research
focuses on examining people's CAM use and
decision-making in the context of cancer
care. "Alternative medicine refers to treatments
that are used in lieu of conventional medicine,
like traditional Chinese medicine."
Lynda's research is partially funded through
the Canadian Cancer Society to respond to a
growing demand from cancer patients in the
community for knowledge about complementary
therapies. "One of our studies is considering
In Passing
UBC Nursing Pioneer
Leaves her Legacy
Dr. Lyle Morrison Creelman was one of eight
who graduated with the Bachelor of Applied
Science in Nursing degree from UBC in 1936.
The scope of expertise and influence that
Dr. Creelman generated throughout her nursing
career is outstanding. From Chief Nurse in
the British Zone of occupied Germany in 1944
to Chief Nursing Officer of the World Health
Organization (WHO) in 1954, Dr. Creelman
pioneered the areas of specialized nurses'
training, primary nursing care and public health.
whether or not we are ready in Canada to have
integrated cancer care where conventional and
complementary medicine are combined," says
Lynda. "My colleague, Dr. Alison Brazier, and
I are studying health care providers to find out
whether it is something they are aware of
or think is necessary. In other studies, we are
listening to the patients and learning that
they want support in making safe and
informed decisions with regards to CAM."
There are challenges in this area of research.
The effects of CAM on a specific patient may
be individualized to the extent that it is difficult
to obtain general knowledge using current
study methods. Further, because many CAM
and conventional practitioners are hesitant
about integrating the two systems of care,
patients may make decisions about using CAM
that they are reluctant to reveal to their care
providers and to researchers.
"I'd like to see more integration of therapies
for which we have strong scientific evidence in
order to address the whole person," says
Lynda. "There is a lot we can learn from these
traditional therapies. We need to look at
prevention versus treatment, and at developing research approaches that will allow us
to examine whole systems."
Lynda sees nurses as excellent resources
to provide information and support to
patients about the numerous treatment (and
prevention) options available. "Nurses are
An editorial in ICN Calling, a journal of the
International Council of Nurses in Geneva,
says of her contributions while at the WHO
that "she has probably achieved more for
nursing throughout the world than any other
nurse of her time."
Among many degrees and awards, Dr. Creelman
received an honourary doctorate from UBC
in 1992, the Order of Canada in 1971, and the
commemorative medal for the 125th
anniversary of the Confederation of Canada.
Dr. Creelman died peacefully February 27,
2007 in her 98th year.
(Facts and details supplied by Glennis Zilm BSN '58)
the ones who often spend the most time with
the patient. They have the patient's trust,
they have skills around assessing patients,
counseling, and interpreting research
evidence. We can arm them with evidence-
based CAM information and work together
to monitor the effects once these therapies
are administered."
To build the bridge toward integration there
need to be more researchers in the field
of CAM, Lynda hopes that more funding will
help build a body of evidence. "Because
this is such a holistic approach, there are so
many pieces involved. How do patients
make decisions around CAM? Where do they
require additional support? How do
we develop a knowledge base about key
interventions that people can use?"
The School of Nursing looks forward to the
developments of this community-focused,
holistic approach toward conventional and
complementary medicine in which Lynda
and her colleagues are engaged. Graduate Profile
Working with Story,
Developing Policy
Imagine, you sit in the waiting
room of a busy hospital, the
surgeon approaches you to inform
you that your loved one has
successfully come through surgery
and is in recovery. Naturally, you
want to go to that person but
you are told you are not allowed
in the room. Why?
That is the question Nerrisa Bonifacio, BSN '04
and graduating MSN student, asked herself
when she was enrolled in a specialty course in
post-anesthetic care while working in the
recovery room. "I came across two articles
written in the 1990s that supported family
visitation in the recovery room," says
Nerrisa. "This piqued my interest," so much
so that during the first course of her
master's program, Nerrisa wrote a paper
comparing adult and child visitation in
the recovery room. This in turn led to the
subject of her master's thesis.
Nerrisa and her thesis supervisor, Dr. Geertje
Boschma, Associate Professor, discussed
how to approach the subject, whether through
an ethnographic or historical study. "I came
to the conclusion that I needed to understand
the historical roots as to why family visitation
continues to be an ongoing and controversial
issue," says Nerrisa, "so I decided to conduct
a historical analysis."
Articles from the 1940s and 1950s mention
a "no visitors" rule in the recovery room but
few, if any, reasons are given. "Some articles
state it disrupts patient care when family
is present, others mention infection control as
the recovery room is in close proximity
to the operating room. During that time they
didn't have monitors, patients were unconscious or heavily sedated and not breathing on
their own, so the safety of the patient was
of utmost importance to the nurse on duty."
The analysis also includes oral history
interviews. Nerrisa conducted nine interviews
with nurses who practiced in the 1970s
and 1980s as this was the period when the
issue of restricting family visitation was
first questioned. She asked them about their
experiences and about the history of the
recovery room in their hospital. They shared
their observations about how practice
has changed in relation to family involvement.
Nerrisa will use these data to document the
history of recovery room nursing practice and
family visitation and to put it into perspective.
This will help to inform future policy.
"I'm speaking with women who are part of
nursing history," she says. "One woman I
interviewed was on the first recovery room
standards committee in B.C. I wanted
to focus on the nurses' experiences and
perspectives which I felt were missing.
I need to go back to these nurses and find out
why the rules and expectations were there,
and their acceptance level of policies in place
regarding the recovery room in their practice."
Today, Nerrisa explores the concept of space
as one explanatory context. What function do
nurses see the recovery room space having?
It is a critical time for patients and one of the
nurse's primary objectives is to help the
patient recover safely. How does the family
fit into that role?
"I've learned a great deal and have come to
realize how much things have changed
and evolved over the last 30 years," she
says,"and I felt honoured and privileged
to be in the presence of these nurses who
have practiced before me."
As with most scholastic endeavours, the
student is not alone. From the outset,
Nerrisa was encouraged by faculty members
and students to pursue higher education in
nursing. She also gained encouragement from
being acknowledged for her hard work with
the Ethel Johns and Isabel Maitland Stewart
Memorial Scholarship and Xi Eta Graduate
Student Research Award. Not only did they
help financially, Nerrisa was able to focus her
time to concentrate on her area of research.
"I really do believe this is what I am meant to
do," she says. "I'll definitely continue with
nursing history and I plan to pursue a Ph.D.
in the near future." Nerrisa's hope is to
document the history of the recovery room in
Western Canada.
For the School, Nerrisa's passion for the rich
history of nursing's development in Canada
stirs up feelings of pride as UBC Nursing has
always been at the forefront of cultivating
nursing leaders. Undergraduate Profile
Love and Excitement for Education
Since graduating in May, Christine Fantuz, BSN '07, continues to work
at Vancouver General Hospital. She fulfilled her clinical preceptorship in
the ICU at VGH and is pursuing her specialty in critical care with the
goal of returning to the ICU in 2008. From the outset, her preceptor was
surprised at Christine's comfort with all the alarms, bells and activity in
the unit, but Christine feels at home. "One of the main reasons I want to
work in the ICU is because of its holistic approach," she says. "I can get
to know patients inside and out and I have the opportunity to give them
high quality care because I can focus on only one or two patients."
During the nursing program, Christine
did field placements in a number of nursing
specialty areas such as maternity, mental
health and geriatrics, and was surprised at
how the tools from each aspect of nursing
transferred into the next. During an international placement in Nepal with fellow
graduate Julia Iwama, Christine was able to
share information from her leadership and
management course. "Julia and I didn't bring
any notes with us from that class because
we figured we wouldn't need them in Nepal,
but there we were talking about change theory,
organizational charts and transformational
leadership because the hospital would soon
renovate and expand."
One of Christine's long range plans is more
international relief work—to provide care
in Third World countries to children, to orphans
or to whomever is in need. "Wherever you
go, people need health care," she says. And
in Nepal, where the life expectancy is 48.9
Even Teddy Bears
Practice Good Hygiene
Six UBC nursing students participated in the UBC
Health Sciences Students' Association's
(HSSA) Teddy Bear Day Project earlier this year.
This community outreach project is designed
to teach elementary school kids some health
basics like hand washing. Nursing students
show the children how to wash their hands
properly by covering their hands with a special
years, Christine believes they could also
benefit from education. "I really believe that
education is the root to making a difference,"
she says. "I'm not a believer in doing 'for,'
but rather in doing 'with.' I'd like to be able to
empower people and get them excited to
make positive health changes in their lives."
Before entering nursing, Christine practiced
massage therapy, owning and operating a
multidisciplinary health clinic that coordinated
massage services with those of physiotherapists, acupuncturists and naturopaths. "I get
bored easily," Christine chuckles "and have
always sought out learning. I love it." This is,
in part, why the program at UBC attracted
Christine. It is a two year intensive experience.
"One thing the program definitely allows
is that you get into the nitty-gritty early on. You
also have an opportunity to draw on your
strengths and learn from your weaknesses."
Christine was recently awarded the Karen
Elaine Florence Madsen Memorial
Scholarship—an award made to a final year
paint (aka Glo-Germs!). After washing, they test
children's hands under black light to see if they
have been successful washers.
HSSA brings together students from many
health science disciplines to provide information
about their professions. "This is a great opportunity to teach parents, teachers and young
children about the roles of nurses, to identify
where nurses can be found in the community
and to know who the nurse in the school is,"
says Jacklin Tran, first term nursing student.
student who shows not only outstanding
personal qualities but high academic achievement and a true dedication to the nursing
profession. "When I saw the award online,
understood the reasons for it, and recognized
that it had been recommended by the faculty
I was ecstatic, honoured and overwhelmed,"
she says, as she prominently lists the name
and description of the award on her resume.
"When it arrived, I was trying to figure out how
I could possibly finance my clinical learning
in Nepal," says Christine. "I was determined
to complement my nursing education with
an international experience in a Third World
country so this award helped immensely."
"I feel very fortunate," she says; and the
School feels fortunate to have graduates like
Christine who combine their life experience
with new learning to offer thoughtful,
compassionate and effective care to those
in need wherever they find them.
Jacklin Tran and Leanne Kwiatkowski teach
health basics to Charles Dickens Elementary
School children. Career Reflections
"Research changes knowledge;
knowledge changes midwives
and nurses; nurses and
midwives change practice."
When I spoke with Dr. Colleen Stainton, UBC
BSN '61, it was her first official day of
retirement. Having just moved back to B.C.
after 10 years in Australia, she was looking
forward to a day free of appointments.
As the first Clinical Chair of Women's Health
Nursing in the Faculty of Nursing and
Midwifery at the University of Sydney and the
Centre for Women's Health Nursing, Royal
Hospital for Women, Colleen is used to filling
her days to capacity.
From early on, Colleen's interest lay in
maternity and neonatal care, and with
master's preparation at the University of
California, San Francisco (UCSF) became a
perinatal clinical nurse specialist and
developed a research focus on bonding and
attachment issues. She also completed
a doctorate at UCSF. Her career focus has
been to improve the nursing and midwifery
role in health care through linking and
integrating education, research and practice.
After 25 years with the University of Calgary
Faculty of Nursing, she was recruited to
Australia. "I considered the job in Australia
my bliss job where I could really use my
experience as educator and researcher," says
Colleen. "It was wonderful to be given five
empty rooms for a nursing research centre in
a women's hospital and be asked to develop a
research culture with nurses and midwives."
Colleen's first activity was to walk through the
units and talk to the nurses to find out the
nature of their practice. She found there were
several commonalities among the units that
provided a full range of women's health care.
But, as she stepped out of her car on the first
day, the head nurse of the newborn nursery
and the clinical nurse were waiting at the
door. "They said, 'come with us' and told me
that they wanted to begin developmental
care and needed help. That began the first
study—a four-year action research project.
That and all other projects were initiated by
clinicians from puzzles they faced in practice.
They then involved them in the study including
presenting and publishing." The partnership
between clinicians and researchers,
working with participants, is very powerful.
Since the age of three, Colleen wanted to
be a nurse, and throughout her career she has
embraced challenging projects and roles
from developing curriculum and research in
maternal- infant care with professionals
from Nigeria, Taiwan, Sweden, Canada and
Japan to lobbying to retain a women's
hospital in Calgary. Colleen was also a
founding member of a faculty group from
Foothills Hospital, Mount Royal College and
the Faculty of Nursing at the University
of Calgary where she developed and taught
advanced nursing practice roles and
established the international maternity nursing
conference group in 1986 with a group
of international colleagues. She was awarded
Rotary's Paul Harris Fellowship for work
in Guyana.
Colleen remembers fondly her time in the
nursing program at UBC. Her class was
the last to go through the joint Vancouver
General Hospital/UBC program. "We were
taught from a theoretical framework," says
Colleen, "and developed skills in campus labs
prior to hospital experience." Her class
still reunites and talks about their UBC experience—they meet every five years for a few
days and have a lunch in the years between—
the 45th reunion was in September 2006.
"Nursing was a very satisfying place to live my
life," she says, "and my time at UBC provided
such solid knowledge and skills for practice.
A wonderful group of faculty as well as classmates and colleagues, both ahead and
behind me in the program, instilled in me a
patient-focused view but very importantly,
a belief in my own value as a nurse."
One of Colleen's classmates, Dr. Pauline Kliewer (nee Peters) BSN '61, shown here with
John Welty, President of California State University, Fresno, was inducted into the Central San
Joaquin Valley Nursing Hall of Fame, September 20, 2006. "Nurses are always there when
people are at their most vulnerable," says Pauline. As part of the honour, the Hall of Fame cited
Pauline's dedication to the nursing profession and her impact on hospitals, public health,
home health agencies, colleges and universities. Congratulations Pauline! Clinical Practice Innovation
Action at the
Seniors' Home
Elaine Unsworth, UBC School of Nursing
Adjunct Professor, BSN '94, MSN '99, is a
clinical nurse specialist in the elder care
program with Providence Health Care and
shares the story of four male residents
in Holy Family Hospital who wanted a cat.
Instead of refusing the request, the clinical
nurse leaders brought the residents and
their families together to discuss how having
a pet might work. Holy Family Hospital is
now home to a loving cat. In fact, the five care
homes within Providence Health are homes
to six cats and some birds.
"We have to start asking 'why not?'" says
Elaine, who is one of a dynamic team at
Providence Health working with the Eden
Philosophy of Care, created by Dr. Bill Thomas
and adopted almost three years ago. "The
Philosophy looks at how we provide care and
treat people who live in our care homes, and
how we make them pleasant homes in which
to live," says Elaine, who played a key role
in establishing the standards and creating the
staff model. The three plagues of residential
care facilities that the Eden Philosophy says
contribute to suffering are helplessness,
loneliness and boredom, and it offers 10
principles to counteract them.*
There have been many changes over the last
few years at Providence Health residential
care facilities—all working toward deinstitutionalization. Prepackaging medications means
they can be delivered to stable elders by care
aides which frees up RNs to do more
specialized care. More care aides means more
individual care for residents and more
opportunity for residents to be involved in care
decisions. Expanded communication channels
help staff on various shifts know the details of
each person living in the facility.
"The staff do a great job at providing care the
way the residents want it," says Elaine. "I hope
when I move in I'll be able to have a coffee
in my room when I wake up and have a bath
at night."
During her undergraduate studies, Elaine took
an elective in mental health. During her
first job, she was introduced to the geriatric
population. Although she was concerned
that this cohort might not be very stimulating,
she learned otherwise and not only loved it
but chose this area to pursue in her master's
program. She continues to thrive on the
challenges of bio-psycho-social geriatric care.
Today she enjoys the challenge that the
model will be ever changing as residents
change, staff change and individual needs play
into the daily mix. "I love doing this work,"
she says. "It's so important that we respect
elders and what they want, and as we move
toward providing individualized care, it's exciting and rewarding to see people still growing
and developing, even well into their 90s!"
However, Elaine cautions that in order to
keep this ball rolling there will have to
be more proactive marketing done to advocate
for senior care as most people are not
exposed to senior care until a loved one
experiences it. "I wish we could offer
opportunities for everyone to talk with someone in their own language every day, and
have more choices—like having a bath when
they wanted and eating the food they want.
We need to focus on the fact that we work in
the residents' homes, that they don't just
live where we work."
As Elaine continues to discover the gifts that
seniors can offer her, the School continues
to celebrate its alumnae and members of its
faculty for the heartfelt work they do to
improve the care for all those in need.
*To read the details of the 10 principles of the Eden
Philosophy visit the Providence website at this link:
Alumni Action
Hurricane Ivan swept through the Caribbean
region on September 7, 2004. It ravaged
Grenada with rain and winds of 220 kilometres
per hour. Thirty seven people died and most of
the population was affected: churches, schools
and close to 90% of homes were destroyed.
In other news, the class of '57 will host
their 50th anniversary this September at
Harrison Hot Springs in B.C. Wondering
about the connection between these two
events? Margaret Mitchell (nee Cameron)
BSN '57 volunteered on a mental health
team that traveled to Grenada from Calgary
this past winter to help teach residents,
teachers and clergy about loss and trauma.
"Some of the stories would break your heart,"
says Margaret. "If a gust of wind blew,
elementary students would crawl under their
desks and teenagers would lose their
motivation to study because they feared more
devastation." One of Margaret's main reasons
for going was to help teachers design their
own critical management plan and to make
presentations on loss and grief and how to
deal with the aftermath of trauma.
If you are from the class of '57, would like
to reconnect with classmates, or share some
of your stories at the reunion, please e-mail
Margaret at holmes4mitchell@yahoo.ca. Teaching Innovation
Understanding Ethics
through Experience
The air in the ethics class fills with
determined voices as students
pair up to role play nurse manager,
student, educator or administrator
debating the standards of the
Canadian Nurses Association Code
of Ethics. Eventually, Dr. Paddy
Rodney, Associate Professor
and Undergraduate Coordinator,
brings the role players back
together for group discussion.
"It makes the code come alive for the students,"
says Paddy. "The code is up for revision this
year. In last summer's class the students were
able to show that there was not enough
emphasis on looking after students. This time
students were able to identify that there
could be an explicit rule in the code about
care of the body after death."
In the 1960s, questions arose as to the ethics
of treating people as objects in research
and medical bio-ethics was developed to draw
on philosophical principles that taught us
how to act. "The notion of how to treat people
has always been a part of health care,"
says Paddy, "and one thing that nursing ethics
takes into account that bioethics does not,
is that workload is a huge ethics issue."
Paddy is excited about the compounded
effects of teaching ethics in the classroom.
"When these students graduate, some of
their colleagues will not have been exposed to
this type of ethics education. They will have
an opportunity to learn from our graduates
and get excited about it." And, as each class
graduates, more colleagues in the workforce
will have a deeper understanding of the ethical
theory in the nursing workforce.
"When our students are on field placements,
they are exposed to moral distress in
the workplace," Paddy says. "We all struggle
with many ethical issues due to strained
resources and that has a cumulative effect.
So, how will the students react to this
when they graduate? What are they going
to do about it?"
As a School, Paddy believes we have a moral
obligation to support the emotional and
physical health of our students, and believes
this sentiment will transfer out to patients
and staff when students graduate. Through
her classes, Paddy hopes to help students
find the meaning and relevance of ethics in
their own practice. "The long term positive
effects are exciting," says Paddy. "Hopefully,
students will ask questions in practice
and not take for granted that 'this is how it's
done.' It will also help them find their voice
to articulate how health care and their own
practice ought to be."
Just as Paddy continues to inspire her
students to learn and absorb the value of
ethics in their profession, she also
continues to inspire herself by constantly
learning from students, from conferences,
from debate and from witnessing the
policy and practice of ethics in the nursing
workforce. "Deepening my understanding
of ethics theory will help me heighten
my effectiveness in its application," Paddy
says. "Don't ever underestimate the
difference you as an individual can make
with thoughtful questions."
It's dedicated and passionate professors
like Paddy, who help the School of Nursing
provide the current workplace climate
with earnest, compassionate graduates keen
to participate in and lead the nursing
profession into the future.
TouchpoI NTS
Touchpoints is published by the School
of Nursing, Faculty of Applied Science,
The University of British Columbia.
Editor: Sally Thorne
Associate Editor/Writer: Julie Lees
Editorial Advice: Dr. Marilyn Willman
Design/Production: Tandem Design Associates Ltd
Printing: Rhino Print Solutions
The UBC School of Nursing
T201-2211 Wesbrook Mall
Vancouver, B.C.  V6T2B5


Citation Scheme:


Citations by CSL (citeproc-js)

Usage Statistics



Customize your widget with the following options, then copy and paste the code below into the HTML of your page to embed this item in your website.
                            <div id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidgetDisplay">
                            <script id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidget"
                            async >
IIIF logo Our image viewer uses the IIIF 2.0 standard. To load this item in other compatible viewers, use this url:


Related Items