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AIDS Education at Marquette More than 50 million people live with the AIDS virus worldwide, and nearly 80 percent of the cases are in Africa, south of the Sahara. In 1997 Sister Genovefa Maashao came to Marquette's College of Nursing in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, from her native Kenya to learn about AIDS prevention and patient care. She became the only HIV/AIDS-trained health care professional in a community of 300,000. In spring 2003 Sr. Genovefa returned to Marquette with 12 nurses for a five-week training program that has earned the praise of President Bush. "Nursing in Africa" has received $1.8 million from the U.S. Agency for International Development to fund the program for four years. The nurses have returned to Kenya with the skills to train others at three Marquette-partner treatment sites. The Marquette program is designed to train a sustainable workforce in Kenya, enhance the health care infrastructure and the quantity and quality of life of AIDS patients.-Joe Cockrell, Marquette University, joe.cockrell@marquette.edu

 

Nursing Opportunities Overseas!!

Nursing and medical schools in Third World countries are inviting nurses and doctors from the U.S. to come and share their education and expertise with their students in one-to two-week workshops (or longer!!).

 

In His Image has been formed to try to meet this need. The last day of each workshop is devoted to teaching Christian principles on various subjects, such as creation vs. evolution, marriage/family, etc., with Christian nationals also giving their testimonies. Teams have recently gone to Kazakhstan, Afghanistan and China, with two upcoming spring trips planned, one to Afghanistan and the other to Kazakhstan and Kirghizstan. Requests for teams far exceed personnel; don't miss this opportunity!! For more information, see http://www.inhisimage.org or e-mail nursing@inhisimage.org.

 

Spiritual Assessments-When? Have you wondered if JCAHO's standards on spiritual assessment apply only to behavioral health or to all health care settings? And what you are expected to do in making this spiritual assessment? According to Pat Staten, JCAHO's associate director of standards interpretation, JCAHO expects that a spiritual assessment will be conducted on every patient in every health care setting, with a more thorough assessment of the patient's spiritual outlook in behavioral health. Staten says, "Even if a patient says he or she doesn't belong to any particular religion, he or she may have beliefs that affect the care you provide, beliefs that you should take into consideration[horizontal ellipsis]. You should ask if the person has any personal beliefs about spirituality beyond just the denomination."-Pat Staten (630-792-5000), The Hospital Peer Review, April 2003

 

Coronary Care Pioneer

At a conference "Connecting Portraits Past and Present" on April 11,2003, at Teachers College, Columbia University, Rose Pinneo, MSN, RN, a member of JCN's review panel for many years, was honored as a pioneer in coronary care nursing. In July 1963 Pinneo accepted the position of director of the newly opened CCU at Presbyterian Hospital in Philadelphia. In 1964 she collaborated with two MDs, Lawrence E. Meltzer and J. Roderick Kitchell, to co-author Intensive Coronary Care: A Manual for Nurses, soon known throughout the world as "the yellow book." With its publication, Pinneo and Meltzer took the lead in the CCU movement, influencing the establishment of CCUs nationwide.-Arlene W. Keeling, PhD, RN, The Center for Nursing Historical Inquiry at The University of Virginia

 

Medicine for the Masses

With 30,000 scientific journals, most of them unreadable, do we need another one? Perhaps the answer is yes. The new Annals of Family Medicine is thin and photo-free and has a radical idea: a medical journal that appeals to health care personnel and patients. With easy-to-understand articles, the Annals focuses on issues that may be overlooked in more specialized, esoteric journals, but are crucial in real life. It features sound, peer-reviewed science on common health problems-free on a website, http://annfammed.org. Hard copies are also available. A message board allows response to articles.- Mary Carmichael, Newsweek, June 16, 2003

 

Students Fight Nursing Shortage

More than 126,000 unfilled nursing positions in hospitals across the country[horizontal ellipsis] a shortage of 400,000 nurses by 2020. To help combat the potential crisis, members of the Wisconsin Student Nurses Association (WSNA) created Touched by a Nurse, a project meant to recruit students to nursing while enhancing the public image of the profession. WSNA members from around the state, along with RNs from local hospitals, make presentations to school-aged children that focus on all aspects of nursing, from the emotional rewards the profession provides to the variety of careers available to RNs. After hearing the presentation, students are encouraged to discuss, create drawings or write essays about how nurses have touched and influenced their lives. The drawings and essays are entered in a contest with various prizes, including a $500 college scholarship.-Jennifer Thew, Nursing Spectrum, March 24, 2003

 

Redefining Hypertension

High blood pressure is the main risk factor for heart failure and stroke, a major risk factor for heart disease and a precursor for kidney disease. One in four adults, or over 50 million Americans, have high blood pressure. In May the Joint National Committee (JNC) on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation and Treatment of High Blood Pressure, working under the auspices of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health, released study results indicating the critical importance of lowering blood pressure from levels previously thought safe. A new condition, pre-hyperten-sion, has been defined as BPs of 120-139/80-90 mm Hg. At these levels, patients are encouraged to prevent age- and risk-related BP increases by losing excess weight, engaging in routine exercise, limiting alcoholic beverages and following heart-healthy eating plans. Hypertension, the "silent killer," is a continuing challenge to health professionals seeking to assist patients with long and healthy lives.-Herbert L. Insel, MD & Nancy Boccuzzi, RN, Executive Health Exams Newsletter, June 24, 2003

 

Is Research on the Dead Ethical?

A person has been declared dead-brain dead. Is research on his or her heart, such as to test a new mechanical heart, ethical? The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine has led the way in creating policy for regulating this rarely discussed research area. Before this, research on the brain dead and on cadavers has been legal but unregulated. Since drafting the policy, Pittsburgh has received nine submissions seeking to do research on the dead. - Jennifer Couzin, "Crossing a Frontier: Research on the Dead," Science, January 3, 2003

 

-PulseBeats compiled by

 

Melodee Yohe

 

consulting editor