Norah Casey awarded Honorary Fellowship of RCSI Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery
Ms Norah Casey has been made an Honorary Fellow of the RCSI Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery at the 35th Annual International Nursing and Midwifery Research and Education Conference, which opened last night and continues today at RCSI (Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland).
Dr Siobhan O’Halloran, Chief Nursing Officer at the Department of Health and keynote speaker Ms Deanna Williams, President of Dundee Consulting, Canada are among those who will address the conference on the theme ‘Maintaining Professional Competence: Continuous Professional Development and Patient Centred Outcomes’.
More than 220 nurses and midwives are attending the event to discuss the latest developments in modern nursing. Speakers from Ireland, the USA, Canada, the UK, Australia and the Middle East will talk on older person and aged patient care; mental health and disability nursing; cancer care; neonatal and children’s nursing; and caring and compassion in nursing and midwifery.
Marking the centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising, the Faculty and RCSI will commemorate the role played by Nurse Elizabeth O’Farrell both in the Rising itself and in her subsequent long and distinguished career as a Midwife in the National Maternity Hospital in Holles Street. Nurse O’Farrell tended the wounded in the GPO and was entrusted by Connolly and Pearse to negotiate the surrender. She was subsequently requested to take Pearse’s order to surrender to the various insurgent outposts throughout the city, including to the RCSI garrison on Sunday 30 April 1916. Historians Dr Ann Matthews and Professor Gerard Fealy will address the delegates on‘Nurse Elizabeth O’Farrell: A Commemorative Address for the Centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising’ and a commemorative plaque will be unveiled in her honour.
Speaking at the conference, Professor Marie Carney, Dean of the Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery at RCSI said: ‘Nurses and Midwives provide the foundation for competent, safe, quality patient care in our health service. The theme of this year’s conference provides a great opportunity for critical debate regarding the policy, regulation, education and health service challenges in relation to maintaining professional competence for nurses and midwives both in Ireland and internationally. As well as evidence of best practice in nursing and midwifery research, education and clinical activities being presented by our delegates, we are honoured that our conference will be opened by Norah Casey who is an inspiration to all who seek to establish a reputation of quality healthcare management in the pursuit of excellence.’
Honorary Fellowships of RCSI Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery
The conference opened with an address from Norah Casey, who was awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery, the highest honour the Faculty can bestow, in recognition of her contribution to nursing, business and society internationally. A former nurse, Norah Casey is now an eminent television and radio presenter, author, journalist, entrepreneur and owner and Chairwoman of Harmonia, Ireland’s largest magazine publishing company.
Reading Norah’s citation, Dr Aine Colgan, Board Member and Former Dean, RCSI Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery commended her for a range of important contributions throughout her career, which began as a nurse before she went on to become a publisher: ‘Under her patronage many nurses and midwives were inspired by her dedication to improving care to society through the portfolio content she promoted and the nurses she encouraged to publish their research on patient care. Her charity work is mainly in the areas of cancer, particularly breast cancer and cancer research; the hospice movement; suicide prevention; and a range of women’s charities. Norah’s generosity in sharing her expertise and life experiences with others is displayed at the many events she chairs and speaks at throughout Ireland and internationally.’
Honorary Fellowships of the Faculty were also awarded to Dr Dianne Cooney Miner, Dean of the Wegmans School of Nursing at St John Fisher College, Rochester, New York and Ms Anna Shakespeare, Chief Executive Officer of St. Michael’s House Group, in recognition of their outstanding contributions to nursing and midwifery.
Additional topics and research
A plethora of research was presented at the conference including anew technological advancement in hand hygiene which was presented by Ms Caoimhe Finn RGN MSc, Beaumont Hospital, Dublin. The Infection Prevention and Control Team project, in partnership with MEG and funded by MSD Pharmaceuticals, saw the introduction of the first audit app in Ireland to compile data on staff compliance in relation to hand hygiene. In addition to instant feedback and report generation, the MEG Hand Hygiene app allows staff to input nationally required data directly to a system that can be transferred to the HSE database at the touch of a button. This has eliminated significant paper work and the time saved in terms of data entry alone is approximated at 84 administration hours per year. The App is now being used in 12 hospitals in total – two in the UK and 10 in Ireland.
Other topics being presented at the conference include:
• Identifying Values for Nursing and Midwifery in Ireland. Dr Anne Marie Ryan, Deputy Chief Nursing Advisor, Department of Health, Ireland.
• Measuring Nursing and Midwifery Competence: Can it be measured and how should it be measured? Associate Professor Rachael Vernon, Head of School of Nursing and Midwifery, University of South Australia.
• Entering the world of disability; Irish fathers stories. Dr Lynne Marsh.
• Advancing care planning and advance healthcare directives with people with dementia. Ms Deirdre Shanagher.
• Factors relating to motivation to change behaviour in individuals who are overweight. Dr Theresa Willis.
• Survivorship care for post-menopausal breast cancer patients in Ireland. Ms Elizabeth Meade.