185173 Educating public health nurses for leadership roles in preparedness

Wednesday, October 29, 2008: 1:30 PM

Pamela M. Aaltonen, RN, MS , School of Nursing, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN
Public health nurses have a long, formidable tradition of collaborating with others to accomplish goals. Preparedness activities on local, state and national levels are well suited to benefit from this public health nursing approach. Less clear is how best to educate current and future public health nurses and others for leadership roles in the broad, complex field of preparedness. Homeland Security Presidential Directive 5, issued in 2003, established policy to have a single, comprehensive approach to domestic incident management, suggesting a need for tighter collaboration among partners. The process that faculty from a wide diversity of fields at a large Midwestern university took to determine content and approach for two graduate interdisciplinary courses in preparedness and homeland security will be explored. Group projects, designed to allow students to work on real-world issues while gaining experience working with others from disparate fields, provide perspective on teams' effectiveness. Evaluation data from two student cohorts offers an initial look at how well the courses have worked and what recommendations for changes have been made. Longer term follow-up will be necessary to determine if graduate students' interdisciplinary collaboration pays off in terms of enhanced collaboration and leadership in the field.

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe content appropriate for interdisciplinary preparedness courses. 2. Discuss challenges unique to the design of a course for multiple disciplines. 3. Describe explicit public health nursing faculty and student course contributions.

Keywords: Public Health Nursing, Public Health Education

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am one of the collaborating faculty addressed in the abstract.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.