Maternal-Child Health Nurse Leadership Academy
Minnie, Karin C.S.
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Session presented on Monday, July 27, 2015: Celebrating over 10 years of success, the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau international, has advanced the leadership skills of Maternal and child nurses and nurse midwives in its 18-month Maternal Child Health Nurse Leadership Academy (MCH). This academy was developed and continues to be supported in partnership with Johnson & Johnson. MCH is designed to develop and enhance the leadership skills gained and apply them in health systems for long term and sustainable impact. Over the duration of the academy, mentees are paired with mentors and faculty advisors to plan and implement an inter-professional project. These nurses and nurse midwives involved in the academy work with mothers and babies up to age 5 in a variety of health care settings across the globe. Two hundred and ninety six (296) nurses and nurse midwives have taken part in the MCH academy from 6 countries, to date. During this presentation we will discuss the MCH Academy model, and present the results of the cohorts. At the conclusion of the 18-month academy the mentees demonstrate the leadership knowledge skills and abilities leaRN through dissemination of project results according to the principles of evidence-based research at an international conference. Examples include a MCH project at a public hospital in North West Province South Africa providing training on correct use of pantograms. The initial training led to a 58% reduction in inappropriate admissions. The training is now a permanent seminar and has been expanded across the hospitals' feeder clinics and district wide. Another MCH project was developed to conduct an educational needs assessment, identify a breastfeeding curriculum, execute the mandatory breastfeeding training, and track nurse and patient outcomes pre- and post- the educational intervention. A nurse-driven breastfeeding educational intervention has the potential to increase nurse knowledge, patient satisfaction, and the overall reputation of a hospital. Based on the success of the North American Maternal Child Health Nurse Leadership Academy a pilot Academy was established in South Africa in 2012. The first cohort of the Africa Sigma Theta Tau international (STTI) Maternal Child Health Nurse Leadership Academy (MCH) was launched in 2014; MCH and the projects of the mentees have been successfully implemented and shown to be sustainable. The faculty involved in the Africa MCH, along with their partners from STTI North America and J&J, continue to modify the program and content to fit the African cultural context. The process to adapt MCH to the African context is complex and an ongoing exercise. The way in which the various aspects of the Africa MCH have been adapted to this point and the lessons we leaRN will be shared during this presentation. Based on the reports of the MCH participants, 90% of the academy projects are sustained at their institution because of policy changes and improved patient care. The MCH academy experience instills individual leadership knowledge in nurses and nurse midwives, enabling them to expand their scope of influence, lead multidisciplinary teams and facilitate health care systems changes in order to improve the quality of patient care.