1. Curry, Kim PhD, FNP, FAANP
  2. Editor-in-Chief

Article Content

The new year is always a chance for a fresh start, and there is definitely a need for a fresh start, or at least a significant update, for those of us involved in knowledge dissemination. Whether you are a prospective writer or an experienced author, there are new methods available to showcase your work. Creative ways of disseminating information are developing rapidly, but many authors are not aware of how they can ensure their scholarly work reaches the largest possible audience.


Does it sound like a lot of work to go to this extra effort after you have already hit the "submit" button for a conference or a manuscript? Well, in most cases, it involves very little time on your part. Further, if our goal as clinicians and scientists is to ensure that patients benefit from the latest developments in health care, then considering any and all methods of sharing your work with more people is a small price to pay. We are all familiar with the "three Ps" of dissemination: podium (a talk), poster (a visual representation), and publication (an article in a journal). Let's take a minute to examine the amount of dissemination provided by each of these.


Podium presentations are typically in front of a live audience. Unless the presentation is recorded, the total number of people exposed to the information you are providing is the number of people sitting in the room (and listening) when you give the talk. Of course, TED (technology, entertainment, and design) talks reach a much larger audience because they are very widely disseminated via electronic means, but they represent a very small minority of oral presentations. Most oral podium presentations are one-time events.


Poster presentations are typically managed as something that is taken to a conference and displayed for a day or two. The number of people exposed to the poster is a subset of those attending the conference. Some of the conference attendees will visit the posters, and some of those visiting the posters will actually read them. Authors can enhance this with handouts at the poster session, but whether you present a paper or an electronic poster, it is usually seen by those physically present at the event.


Publication in a journal certainly has the potential to reach a fairly broad audience, and journal publishers are very helpful at advertising new issues and individual articles within issues. However, even the most widely read journals have their limitations. One is information overload on the part of readers. Another is that you have to open the journal (whether paper or online) to see everything that's been published in that issue. Most of us have a pile of journals at home or work that we have not gotten around to opening yet, simply due to time constraints. Thus, that knowledge is sitting there undiscovered by the reader. How can you help, and why should you?


Here are some methods you can use to ensure that your scholarly work is made more visible:


ResearchGate: This is a sharing and collaboration site for science authors and researchers. Information uploaded on your work can be viewed by other researchers, and you can find future collaborators in the ResearchGate community.


LinkedIn: LinkedIn has been around for quite some time. Recently, more members have used it not just to list their professional positions and resumes, but to announce their scholarly work by providing updates on presentations and publications. Contacts on LinkedIn will then receive notice and can reach out to you for sharing and collaboration.


Dissemination events: Some authors hold local dissemination events with academic and/or clinical colleagues to summarize their work and ask for help in strategizing the broadest possible dissemination. Two heads are better than one, and often colleagues can think of creative ways or perhaps other professional contacts that can enhance dissemination through an invited talk, suggestions for potential journals, and related activities.


Google scholars: A free service available to anyone that can enable your work to be located and tracked.


Publons: This is a web site and free service for peer reviewers to track and feature their work.


Kudos: An online service to raise awareness of your article on social media. You can use kudos to collect materials such as videos, slides, blog postings, and other related items in one place. This makes it easier for readers to find your work.


ORCID: This acronym stands for "open researcher and contributor identifier." If you are a new author, you may want to start by obtaining this identification number that is then used throughout your career so that all of your work can be found by querying your ORCID number.


Policy brief/letter to legislator: Not to be overlooked. Consider writing a brief note to your local or state legislator to let them know of your work as well as your interest in engaging with constituents on important health topics. This can provide great benefits over time when you are seen as an expert who can be called on to speak publicly on health issues.


As to why you should help, that's simple. Because what you are doing is important. Your scholarly work needs to reach the widest audience possible so that others, especially patients, can benefit. I encourage you to explore at least one of the methods mentioned above and consider using it with your next publication or presentation. By the way, the information provided here should not be considered an endorsement or advertisement for any of the methods mentioned. It is just a list of ideas and options for you to be aware of and consider. I hope you'll give your role in disseminating your current and future publications some serious thought. You and your patients will benefit.


In this issue, Lorena Jung and colleagues discuss serum and physical risk factors for heart disease in adolescents, an age group not typically studied and with no routine established screens for this condition. Brent Becnel and team look at improving the visibility of APRNs located in the state of Louisiana via geographic mapping, information that can be leveraged for policy, education, or research purposes.


Angela Thompson presents a quantitative study examining the effects of an online educational intervention to ease the transition to the NP role in the first year of practice. Karen Kane McDonnell and her team investigate the knowledge, skills, and abilities of NPs to screen for lung cancer using low dose CT, as well as barriers to its use.


Elizabeth Gatewood and Jennie De Gagne reviews the literature supporting the use of the one-minute preceptor model and what we do and do not know about its use for nurse practitioner students. This article is also our CE feature for the month. Sami Aloush and colleagues ask the intriguing question: Can ibuprofen, absent antibiotics, relieve the symptoms of UTI? The answer awaits you in this issue.


In this month's clinical and case study, Patrick O'Byrne and team discuss unusual or ambiguous presentations of STIs and why it is critical to remember them in developing a differential diagnosis. Benjamin Hartwig and Benjamin Schultze provide a report on an unusual problem, Eisenmenger syndrome, and updated pharmacologic therapy for these critically ill patients. I hope you enjoy each of these new contributions to our science.