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If you have a great topic that you would like to share with your colleagues, or if you are unsure of what you can write about, email Marketing Coordinator Jenna Bertini at jbertini@wocn.org and she will help get you started!

 

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WOC Nurse Experience at the NSNA 35th Annual MidYear Career Planning Conference

Posted By Jenna A. Bertini, Wednesday, November 29, 2017
Updated: Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Written by Society member Daphne (Weiland) Hodges, BSN, RN, CWOCN.


NSNA 35th Annual MidYear Career Planning Conference

The National Student Nurses’ Association, Inc. (NSNA®) held their 35th Annual MidYear Career Planning Conference in San Diego from November 2-5, 2017. The conference hosted close to 550 nursing students and faculty, where nursing students received information about emerging healthcare trends and learned about legislative issues that impact the nursing profession.

I had the opportunity to represent the Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurses Society (WOCN®) in two sessions. In the first session, ten nursing specialties were represented, including the WOC nursing specialty. 325 student nurses attended the specialty nurse panel session. A small breakout session followed with a greater focus on what WOC nursing is and the resources and support that the WOCN Society offers to members. The students were very enthusiastic about WOC nursing.

After each session, trails of nursing students followed me off-stage and into the hallway for sidebar conversations, questions and selfies, which allowed me to further (informally) plug the endless possibilities and career opportunities for our nurses of tomorrow.

I may be biased, but I believe I left the nursing students with feel-good emotions of smiles, applause and tears as I shared my experiences and the impact that WOC nursing has made on my life and on the lives of people WOC nurses have touched.

Tags:  career  conference  faculty  nsna  nurse  nursing student  panel  professionWOCN Society  session  specialty  student  woc nurse 

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WOCN Society Represented at the National Student Nurses' Association 34th Annual Mid-Year Planning Conference

Posted By Jenna A. Bertini, Monday, February 13, 2017
Updated: Friday, February 10, 2017

Nursing students considering their many options following graduation were introduced to wound, ostomy and continence nursing at the National Student Nurses' Association (NSNA) 34th Annual Mid-Year Planning Conference. More than 600 junior and senior nursing students from across the country attended the conference in Kansas City, Missouri, in November 2016.

WOCN Society member Carolyn Crumley, DNP, RN, ACNS-BC, CWOCN, presented a concurrent student workshop, “Wound, Ostomy & Continence Nursing – WOC Nurses: Who we are, what we do,” which provided an overview of the impact that the WOC specialty has on patient outcomes and the various opportunities for board-certified WOC nurses. Carolyn also participated in a nursing specialty showcase panel presentation, with many students expressing an interest and requesting additional information.

Interestingly enough, in an unusual coincidence, the panel participants who represented eight different nursing specialties included a classmate from each of Carolyn’s nursing education programs – BSN, MSN and DNP!

Read Carolyn’s thoughts on her informative presentation and how she hoped it impacted the students:

1. What is one piece of information you hope attendees took away and found helpful from your student workshop, "WOC Nurses: Who we are, what we do?"

I hope that the nursing students who attended the session gained a better understanding of the WOC specialty nursing practice – whether they were interested in pursuing WOC specialty practice as their career path or in working with WOC nurses within their organization in other capacities. For those attendees who were interested in pursuing the WOC specialty practice, I hope that they found the discussion of the educational and certification options helpful. Finally, I hope that my passion for working with wound, ostomy and continence patients inspired them to seek out an area of nursing in which they feel the same dedication and personal satisfaction.

2. What piece of advice did you provide the students during the Nursing Specialty showcase panel presentation?

I stressed to the students that if you are not experiencing personal fulfillment in a nursing position that you are working in, explore the multitude of other opportunities. And it is not all about how much money that you make!

3. What did you like most about presenting to nursing students at the NSNA conference?

It was inspiring to see a new generation of nurses involved with a professional organization, even prior to graduation! I heard several other presenters who reinforced the benefits of continuing their involvement with the various nursing and specialty organizations.

Tags:  advice  conference  continence  NSNA  nurse  nursing student  ostomy  panel  specialty  WOC Nurse  workshop  wound 

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WOCN Society Member Highlights Experience Presenting at the 2016 National Student Nurses Association (NSNA) Conference

Posted By Jenna A. Bertini, Tuesday, April 19, 2016
Updated: Tuesday, April 19, 2016

WOCN Society member, Teri Robinson, RN, BSN, CWON, shared her recent experience about presenting educational sessions at the National Student Nurses Association (NSNA) Conference in Orlando, Florida.

You can read Teri's story below, and if you have a story you would like to share please email us at share@wocn.org.

It was a great opportunity to present at NSNA in Orlando this year. I was able to meet a student board member and the editor. It was very impressive to see the new generation of nurses active in nursing.  Their excitement and passion validated why I chose this career and why I still love it!

I presented two sessions on “Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurses: Who we are and what we do”.  Both sessions were extremely well attended. The first session was completely full and the second was ¾ full.  I had great questions from the audience during and after the presentations.  These included flexibility of the role, the schools offered, and private practice opportunities.  This was a very rewarding experience. I am thankful for the opportunity to share the varied roles Nursing can offer, especially WOC nursing specialty.

Tags:  NSNA  nursing  nursing student  WOC  woc nurse  WOCN  WOCN Society 

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Guided Nursing Electives----Wound Care at Roper Hospital

Posted By Lauren Schoener-Gaynor, Thursday, July 30, 2015

The following post was written by Xiang Liu, a student at the Medical University of South Carolina.

Ever since I enrolled in the BSN program, I have heard a lot about specialized nursing. I became interested in wound care right after I did my first “wet to dry” dressing change in the Simulation lab.

Wound care is a science and is accompanied by its own pathology, language, nursing skill set and patient education. Fortunately, the Guided Nursing Electives course at Medical University of South Carolina gave me an opportunity to better understand wound care, and I was blessed with wonderful mentors and preceptors who provided me with a great start for becoming a wound care nurse.

By working with my mentor at Roper Hospital, SC, I saw a variety of wounds, I acquired knowledge and skills relative to management of wounds, incisions, skin ulcers and ostomies. I noted the different types of dressings and the different practices in day to day performance. I realized how medical complications could be prevented by providing patient education and by simply proper hand washing and infection control.  I observed how my mentor changed dressings, how she handled wounds; more importantly, I was fascinated by how she interacts with patients, patients’ families and how she applies her global nursing skills. She is not only a great role model for wound care, she is also a role model to me personally with respect to becoming an excellent nurse in general. 

I have gained additional learning experiences in this rotation.

First of all, I became familiar with ostomy and continence management. When I first studied ostomies, I believed no surgical procedure created more misunderstanding and fear than this one does. Through the time with my mentor, I gained a wealth of knowledge related to ostomy care).  First I learned that ostomies are not only from some colon cancer procedures, other bowel diseases such as diverticulitis, inflammatory bowel disease and even traumatic injury to the bowels may also require an ostomy. I learned that an ostomy can be temporary or permanent. I learned that there are a variety of ostomy procedures including colostomy and ileostomy depending on the location of the disease. I learned how to manage the stoma as well as pouches. On top of this, I realized how important it is for an ostomy nurse to be present for pre- and post-surgical management of the patient.

Every Monday morning, I followed my mentor to mark the stoma sites for the patients who were scheduled to have bowel surgery. We assessed their abdomen in order to decide where the stoma should be. We made every effort to help the doctor create the stoma in an area that the patient can easily see, reach and take care of. Stoma site selection was a priority during the preoperative preparation; it helps to reduce postoperative problems including leakage, skin irritation, and clothing concerns. Furthermore, we also assist patients and their family in understanding about stoma care and the use of ostomy appliances prior to surgery.

Having an ostomy is a life changing experience for many patients, but patients should still be able to work, play sports, and exercise. This indicates another important role of an ostomy nurse: an ostomy nurse is the one who provides continuous personalized care for the best outcome possible; we are the one who guides the patient to maintain their healthy active lifestyle.

At the end, I was so fortunate and was privileged to observe the physician (Dr. Lagares-Garcia) performing laparoscopic robotic bowel surgery.  This helped me to integrate my experiences and knowledge into a complete picture and was invaluable.

Second, I learned that excellent wound care means treating the whole patient, not just the wound. For example, we had a patient who was young but had an abscess that refused to heal. The patient has a long history of diabetes and obesity.   During the conversation with him, my mentor identified several inconsistencies:  the patient stated that he was living with his sister, but when he was asked if he has been checking his blood sugar routinely, he said he has been using his brother’s glucose meter.  We understand that people with diabetes often have poor circulation which causes slow healing. My mentor suspected that his blood sugar had not been well controlled which was contributing to his poor wound healing process. “No fancy dressing could help his wound, if he doesn’t treat his underlying problem”, my mentor said. Understanding these interlinked causes, a diabetic educator was suggested to facilitate him controlling his weight and to regain control of his diabetes. Successful treatment of difficult wounds requires assessment of the entire patient. Systemic problems impair wound healing, in fact, non-healing wounds may reveal systemic pathologies.

Third, the term 'palliative care' is used to describe care given to patients with advanced, life-limiting illness. The palliative care goals are then transferred to wound care for patients whose wounds do not heal. We had a patient who was 89 year old with a complicated medical history: above the knee amputations on both legs, diabetes mellitus, peripheral vascular disease, dementia, malnutrition, and problems with swallowing. The patient had multiple ulcers staged from I to IV. A couple of her ulcers were undermining and/or tunneling.  Based on the patient’s situation, my mentor suggested that the Palliative Wound Management might be more appropriate on this patient. She explained, “With the patient physical condition like this, aggressive wound treatment is not the priority intervention since the healing is not the primary goal. The goals of current wound care intervention (called palliative wound care) are stabilization of existing wounds, prevention of new wounds and symptom management.”

Finally, I discovered that finding new methods to improve wound healing have a great value in the clinical settings. This is another reason that I have passion for wound care since I have many years of research training in cancer biology. Specifically I believe that wound care is a clinical area that requires critical thinking and experimental approaches. Although there are a wide range of topical management options in wound management, choosing the most appropriate dressing makes a huge difference on the process of healing. Moreover, patients with underlying health conditions such as diabetes, stroke, heart disease, paralysis and many other illnesses contribute to wounds development that needs specialized care. “Effective dressing requires a stable “base”, my mentor said, implementation of personalized topical therapeutics guided by molecular diagnosis may result in significant improvements in outcome and my expertise in examining biological problems and finding solutions promotes me to be very interested in the science of wound care.

Overall, my experience in wound, ostomy and continence during the Guided Nursing Electives has given me an opportunity to witness how and what the WOC nurse should be and to understand the importance of treating the whole patient during wound care therapy. Wound care nurses must possess specialized wound care knowledge as well as a solid understanding of general nursing concepts, patient care, anatomy and physiology, and even psychological aspects of the patient. Wound care nurses are an extremely important part of the treatment team who make an enormous difference in the quality of patients’ lives by delivering expert care to individuals with wounds, ostomies and incontinence and by provide continuous care to help patients return to daily life and healthy lifestyles.

By writing this reflection paper, I am sharing how the experience improved my knowledge of wound care, and more significantly how it impacts my belief that nurses can make changes. 

Before attending nursing school, I spent 15 years carrying out human disease related diagnostic and preclinical drug development research. This research provided me with a strong medical science background, but also has led to my realization that findings from basic research need translation into practical applications to prevent, diagnose and treat human disease. In my opinion, more than any other healthcare profession, nurses know what patients need, know what to do to meet those needs and how to make a difference. Having now graduated with my BSN, coupled with my previous research training, enables me to apply critical thinking skills to clinical settings. This integration raises me to a higher level allowing me to address complex questions and problems in critical care, especially in improving healthcare outcomes and preventing disease.


 

Tags:  BSN  nursing  nursing student  WOC nurse  woc student  WOCN 

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The Rutgers University School of Nursing - Camden Now Offering WOC Program

Posted By Lauren Schoener-Gaynor, Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Rutgers University School of Nursing Camden (SNC) is a part of one the largest research intensive universities in the nation which has the motto “Jersey Roots, Global Reach.” The School of Nursing Camden opened in 2010 and was built upon 30 years of baccalaureate nursing education as a Department of Nursing.

Rutgers School of Nursing Camden is preparing registered nurses for the future of health care by offering the Wound Ostomy Continence Nursing Education Program (WOCNEP) as a graduate level certificate in which participants learn about the theory and practices that promote and restore health for people with wounds or skin conditions, fecal or urinary diversions (ostomies), and continence problems. The course work of this program earns students graduate level credits that can be used to further their education beyond the certificate including the School’s Doctor of Nursing Practice Program. The onsite class meets once weekly in late afternoon and evening timeframe making for easy commuting and work schedule adaptation. Digital supports via the E-College learning platform permit 24-7 access to course materials. Clinical preceptorships are completed offsite near the student’s home with an appropriately credentialed preceptor.

To learn more about Rutgers, the School of Nursing or the WOC program, click here.

Tags:  nursing  nursing student  students  WOC  woc nurse  WOC programs 

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