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Supporting Advances in Education and Practice

May 26, 2016

Since they were established in 2004, the BAYADA Awards have recognized nurses for their ideas enhancing technological innovation in nursing education and practice. Proposals from professionals in health care from various backgrounds were considered, and on May 5, 2016, for the second year, awards were presented for Technological Innovation in Health Care Education and Practice.

The 2016 BAYADA Award recipients are Joshua D. Lenchus, DO, associate professor of Clinical Medicine and Anesthesiology at University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, for leading the way to the next generation of invasive bedside procedural instruction; and the team of Yvonne Weideman, DNP, assistant professor and coordinator of Second Degree Programs at Duquesne University School of Nursing, Joan Such Lockhart, PhD, clinical professor and MSN Nursing Education Program coordinator at Duquesne University School of Nursing, Marie Panas, MSN, Instructor at Duquesne University School of Nursing; Lisa M. Young, DNP, assistant professor and Director of the Simulation Center at the Ashland University Schar College of Nursing and Health Sciences, Faye Grund, PhD, Dean of the Ashland University Schar College of Nursing and Health Sciences, and Mark Fridline, PhD, instructor and BS/MD enrollment coordinator at the University of Akron, for establishing a virtual clinical experience to build cultural competence.

Lenchus, whose innovation garnered the Innovation in Healthcare Practice Award, said the idea came about the old-fashioned way – through a brainstorming session. “Armed with the idea, we sought to see if our approach had been done elsewhere,” he said. “We contacted dozens of institutions thought to be on the cutting edge of medical education only to discover that what we envisioned had yet to be accomplished.” Lenchus was referring to the simulation-based curriculum in invasive bedside procedural instruction, that significantly improved the knowledge and technical skills of novice health care providers, ending the “see one, do one, teach one” era. “Our concept was simple enough – create a perfect union between participant education and service to the hospital, both under the umbrella of providing safer patient care,” he added.

Since the program’s launch in July of 2007 as an elective for internal medicine residents at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, it rapidly became one of the most sought-after rotations in the program. Now, more than 1,500 medical residents and fellows, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists and attending physicians have been trained using this method for common procedures. The efficacy of this approach is demonstrated by improved patient outcomes including a decreased incidence rate of thoracentesis-induced pneumothorax and a reduced rate of central line-associated bloodstream infections. “As more folks participated in the training, word-of-mouth spread like wildfire, and others began to contact us inquiring about the possibility of training their learners. There is a real desire to implement a program like ours, and we are ready, willing and able to facilitate that,” said Lenchus of the program’s remarkable growth.
Lenchus does not foresee the trajectory shifting, as even more doors will be opened in the future thanks to multi-institutional collaborative, grant funding and demonstrable results. He is humbled by the recognition the award has provided. “It underscores the importance and magnitude of what we are accomplishing and speaks volumes to others who may be grappling with this issue,” he said.

Earning accolades for Innovation in Healthcare Education at the event was the team of Weideman, Lockhart, Young, Grund, Fridline and Panas, for the Virtual Simulation Experience (VSE), a web-based virtual clinical experience designed to strengthen the cultural competence of nursing students regarding pre- and post-natal care. Driving home the cultural awareness of this innovation is the collaboration between faculty and students from two schools – one rural and the other urban – including community members from a rural Amish community and an urban underserved African American neighborhood to provide pre-licensure nursing students with the opportunity to learn about, interact with and plan pre- and post-natal care for women from diverse cultures.

“We wanted our students to see a different population.  The students were able to see that while the setting was different, there were some similarities in the needs of the patients,” said Young.  “Access to care was a problem for both, just for different reasons.  The environment and support systems were very different and the patient interventions had to focus on the needs of the patient and the cultural differences in each.”

According to Lockhart, the project was first implemented online in spring 2015 with students from both Duquesne and Ashland enrolled.

Shared simulated virtual experiences allow students to interact with patients offering a creative and cost-effective learning opportunity that can significantly improve students’ cultural competence and confidence. In light of the limited availability of clinical sites in maternal health and the growing competition for these sites, innovative educational approaches, such as this, are essential in nursing education.
For students, the outcomes were quite successful. “They increased their cultural awareness and they learned nursing interventions that were needed in the community to improve outcomes,” said Young, who hopes to expand the project to include more populations so that students can increasingly gain exposure. “This is not the only area where healthcare providers can make an impact.  If we can get into the communities we can affect change and improve outcomes.”
The relationship between the College of Nursing and Health Professions and BAYADA Home Health Care began over a decade ago, and has evolved to encompass The BAYADA Home Health Care Speaker Series in addition to the awards. This spring marked the third lecture in the Speaker Series, which is a platform to highlight topics, trends and leaders in health care, while promoting intellectual stimulation and faculty and staff development. Jerome Dugan, PhD, assistant professor of Health Economics, addressed attendees on an important topic – the Affordable Care Act.

Applications for the 2017 BAYADA Awards are now being accepted. Visit our website to learn more or apply today.

By Margaret DeGennaro ‘12