The Parkinson’s Foundation announced the three winners of this year’s Nurse Faculty Award, giving about $10,000 to each of these nurses to support projects that might better the lives of Parkinson’s patients in their communities.
Each winner is a graduate of the organization’s 50-hour accredited Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program, which works to improve Parkinson’s disease (PD) care across the U.S. by providing additional training and support to nurse educators.
“Nurses are vital in caring for people with Parkinson’s in all settings, from a clinic to an emergency room,” Elizabeth Pollard, the Parkinson’s Foundation vice president, chief education and training officer, said in a press release. “The Parkinson’s Foundation … is excited to continue providing our Edmund J. Safra Visiting Nurse Scholars with an opportunity to develop their independent projects and provide unique tools to further educate nurses to improve PD care.”
Donna G. Hood, PhD, RN, is an awardee. A chronic illness researcher and director of the Division of Nursing at Louisiana Tech University, she will use her award to expand the school’s Parkinson Resource Center program, established through a Foundation grant to support underserved communities in rural Louisiana and southern Arkansas.
The award will double to four the number of participating undergraduate students, provide Parkinson’s patients across the region with resources, mentor future nursing leaders, and help support the program’s replication.
“We have excellent students who have expressed their desire to join us as future nursing student scholars, and we are excited to see this program grow and see how this impacts the Parkinson community in our region and beyond as these student scholars become our future PD champions,” Hood said.
An associate professor of nursing at Seattle University, Mo-Kyung Sin, PhD, RN, will use her award to gauge the impact of the school’s nursing student ambassador program on students’ knowledge of, and competence in, Parkinson’s care. The program includes educating juniors about Parkinson’s care and related case studies, a one-day intensive Parkinson’s education segment, and a group project for six selected seniors who plan to become neurologists.
The project will help develop nurses trained in Parkinson’s care.
Awardee Stephanie Stewart, MSN and a board-certified registered nurse, will launch Navigating the Parkinson’s Journey, aimed at improving life quality by helping patients feel more connected to each other. The program will open in St. Joseph, Missouri, and findings will be accessible to anyone interested. Stewart is an assistant professor of nursing at Missouri Western State University.
Open exclusively to those who complete the Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program, the award supports projects that enhance the scholars’ ability to teach about Parkinson’s, or that increase Parkinson’s knowledge among nurses, students, or patients. The award is for a maximum of $10,000 annually. More information is available here.
Parkinson’s disease affects nearly 1 million people in the U.S. and 10 million individuals globally.
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