EntrepreNURSE panel aiming to break barriers
Friday, February 23, 2018
When most think of innovation in healthcare, they tend to think of physicians or biomedical professionals and engineers. Sadly, they rarely think of nurses.
But in reality, it's the nurses on the front lines, at the bedside and in the community who will be the end user of most products developed in healthcare and the most impacted by policies. They are the masters of workarounds and ingenuity when resources are limited, but their talent is rarely sought after or capitalized on.
Well, a group of nurses are hoping to change that mindset and break some barriers.
In early March, creative minds from around the world will converge in Austin, Texas, for the SXSW Conference and Festival. From March 9-18, global professionals at every level will participate, learn and network at this unique event.
They will explore what is next in entertainment, culture and technology and will prove "that the most unexpected discoveries happen when diverse topics and people come together." Keynote speakers include philanthropist Melinda Gates and London Mayor Sadiq Khan, to name a few.
But this year, for the first time, a panel of nurses will be a part of the conversation on this world stage. Not only is this the first time nurses have been at the convention, but this is the first time there has been an all-female panel.
The panel — "EntrepreNURSE: Hacking, Making & Disrupting Health" — hopes to open the world's view of the value of nursing in innovations, product development and ultimately improving healthcare in general.
The distinguished panel consists of Shawna Butler of Singularity University, Rebecca Love of Northeastern University, Molly McCarthy of Microsoft and Wendy Wright of Wright and Associates Family Healthcare. Each of them comes with a unique perspective demonstrating the value of nurses as the best chance for innovating and transforming healthcare.
There is little dispute that the healthcare system is flawed in so many ways. What this group hopes to shed light on is the fact that leaving nurses out of the conversation makes it destined for failure. So why not invite nurses to the conversation from the beginning?
"Nurses need to show up in places that nurses are not usually found if they want to have an impact and see the changes they desire," says Rebecca Love. "We hope to inspire nurses to become the innovators that they are and show the world their unique value. We hope to disrupt healthcare, just like Florence Nightingale did all those years ago. It was a nurse who changed how we care for the sick, but somewhere along the way our voice got lost."
The panel hopes to also inspire people to consider nursing as a career — to show the world that there is so much more to nursing and that the professional options are endless. But most importantly, that at nearly 4 million strong, the U.S. nursing workforce is an untapped resource of trusted professionals.
To learn more or attend this historic event, you can find more information here.
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