226220 Emergency Planning for Pregnant and Birthing Women and their Newborns: The Role of Public Health Nursing Among Community Stakeholders

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Jeanne Pfeiffer, DNP, MPH, PHN, CIC , School of Nursing, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN
Cheryl Lanigan, PHN, MA , Family Health, Minnesota Visiting Nurse Agency, Minneapolis, MN
Cris Nelson, RN, PHN , Family Health, Minnesota Visiting Nurse Agency, Minneapolis, MN
Linda Olson Keller, DNP, RN, FAAN , School of Nursing, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN
Background and Issues: Pregnant women and their fetuses, and postpartum women and their newborn babies are at increased risk of illness and death during prolonged disasters such as Hurricane Katrina. Communities across the United States are lacking emergency plans for these vulnerable patient groups. In Minnesota there is an identifiable gap in clinical care for these patient groups, like during an influenza pandemic, where the health care delivery systems will be stretched beyond their ordinary capacity. Pfeiffer discussed this clinical gap in a publication (2008). Description: Later, a clinical teaching tool was developed and its implementation formed the basis for this project. The project conformed to the Federal government's mandate that local communities develop extensive emergency services in case of natural disasters, terrorist attacks, and pandemics like H1N1 influenza. The project was hosted by the Minnesota Visiting Nurse Agency, which is the major public health home nursing provider in Minneapolis. Volunteer nurses recruited from the agency, introduced the teaching tool to 19 women, who qualified for the service, during home visits. The nurses rated the tool easy to use with 68% of the clients. Fifty three percent of clients either owned or could buy the supplies for disaster planning. Those noninterested clients each offered a unique response that presented a barrier to emergency planning for them. Lessons Learned: In conclusion, the nurses emphasized that to be successful in engaging clients, the teaching tool should be linked to a multiagency community plan created in collaboration with stakeholders from hospitals, clinics, public health agencies, and emergency management in the metropolitan region of Minnesota. This project also revealed that public health nurses, motivated by social justice principles, need support in planning and intervening in emergency situations to reduce the inequities of the vulnerable clients they serve. Recommendations: Efforts must be made by multiagency emergency preparedness planning leaders to integrate public health nurses with acute and ambulatory care providers to create an alternative plan of care for these at risk groups.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Other professions or practice related to public health
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related nursing

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the current limitations of multi agency, community-based, preevent emergency planning for pregnant and birthing women and their newborns.

Keywords: Community Planning, Public Health Nursing

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am an expert in infection prevention and emergency management. I coordinated the Minnesota Emergency Readiness Education and Training Grant where we address pregnant and birthing women as a vulnerable population. The work that I am reporting was the focus of Doctor of Nursing Practice Leadership project required for graduation this year.
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.