Online Program

School nurse change agents: Closing the gap for an under -immunized school population

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 : 1:30 p.m. - 1:50 p.m.

Judith Styler, BSN, BA, RN, NCSN, Framingham Public Schools, Framingham, MA
Mary Grayce Zentis, MSN, RN, Framingham Public Schools, Framingham, MA
Laura Fenster Rothschild, PsyD, CPS, Johnson & Johnson School Health Leadership Program, Rutgers, Center of Alcohol Studies, Piscataway, NJ
Martha Dewey Bergren, DNS RN NCSN APHN-BC FNASN FASHA FAAN, College of Nursing, University of Illinois Chicago, Chicago, IL
Danielle Cooper, MPH, Johnson & Johnson School Health Leadership Program, Rutgers Center for Alcohol Studies, Piscataway, NJ
Framingham Massachusetts Public Schools, with 8300 students, serves a culturally, ethnically, and economically diverse community. Framngham's families have multiple challenges including financial concerns, insecure employment, language barriers, immigration issues, lack of health insurance, transportation, and difficulty navigating the health care system. In the past, strategies to assure meeting immunization requirements included excluding a student from school if missing a vaccine. This strategy was challenging and only moderately effective and did not meet the education or health needs of the students. Our goal was to eliminate the excluding students for lack of an immunizations and mitigate barriers to timely and convenient access to immunizations for all students. The elimination of exclusions required a collaborative process with state and local agencies, pediatric health care providers, businesses and the media, all skills and strategies reinforced by the Summer School Health Leadership Institute. Descriptions of the challenges faced as well as the successes will be shared. The collaboration between school nurse leaders, public health agencies and community health champions brings about Enduring Change for communities.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related nursing

Learning Objectives:
Describe how a team of school nurse leaders and an executive sponsor were able to bring about a significant public health change in their school community. Discuss the project to close the gap for under-immunized students. Explain how the School Health Leadership Program altered the school nurses. approaches and skills to enhance child health and education outcomes

Keyword(s): Leadership, Change

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: A 2012 Johnson & Johnson School Health Fellow, and Director of School Health Services for a large culturally, economically diverse community. I supervise 22 nurses, oversee comprehensive School Health programing, and responsible for immunization needs, state mandates for school populations. I am a nationally certified, President-elect of Massachusetts School Nurses Association, and board member, Metrowest Free Medical Care Program. My leadership resulted in partnerships, collaborations, initiatives with local and state health and social service agencies.
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.

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