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Published on December 07, 2016

Cone Health Symposium Spotlights Nursing-Led Advances in Patient Care

Nursing Symposium 2016The fifth annual Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice Symposium, presented Nov. 18 by Cone Health and the Greensboro Area Health Education Center, featured scholarly work and clinical insights from nationally recognized health care innovators. More than 300 nurses from 30 North Carolina counties attended seven panels and learned from 40 poster presentations.

“This symposium is part of our promise to the community and our promise to the disciplines across health care that we are leading the way in transforming health care,” said Cone Health Chief Nurse Executive Kenneth Rempher, PhD, RN, MBA, CENP. “It is a unique opportunity for nurses to share research findings that advance our common goal of continuously producing better care for patients.”

2016 Nursing Symposium

The event featured nationally recognized speakers. Topics included innovations in nursing that address community health needs and improved patient outcomes; strategies to reduce patient falls and hospital-acquired infections; the benefits of high-quality oral care for patients who are at risk for developing pneumonia; and employee burnout in health care.

Nursing Symposium 2016

Tara Hulsey, RN, CNE, FAAN, PhD

“One of the ‘wow’ moments of the symposium for me was the research findings around oral care,” said Annie Penn Hospital’s Lisa Covington, MSN, RN, CMSRN. “Timely oral care for patients can decrease health care associated pneumonia, thereby reducing sepsis. This kind of insight is a great example of the value of the knowledge exchanged at this symposium.”

“The symposium makes me feel that I’m a part of something larger, learning so I can empower others and improve patient care. Education is always the key,” said Cone Health nurse tech Tamekia Lockhart.

“The scientifically rigorous nursing research presented here is a key part of our work to revolutionize care at the bedside and at the community level,” said Debbie Grant, MSN, RN, Cone Health’s vice president of nursing, clinical support, ambulatory and health services. “We envision the knowledge gained here, and the practice of exchanging knowledge in this way, as a catalyst for change across our entire nation.”

2016 Nursing SymposiumCapt. Tameka Walker, RN, deputy chief of evidence-based practice at Womack Army Medical Center, reflected on the value of the symposium.

“Sometimes you feel like you’re in the world by yourself, going through the motions and trying to figure out the best clinical solution,” Walker said. “It’s good to discover here that we share not only similar challenges, but also evidence-based solutions. It’s great to see my nursing colleagues enjoy all of the knowledge and information that’s been put forth, knowing that we can share this locally, as well as spread it abroad.”

Iredell Health System, Vidant Medical Center, Duke Health, Wake Med Health & Hospitals, Randolph Hospital and UNC Rex Healthcare were all sponsors of the event.

Cone Health Nurses

“This symposium would not be possible without the partnership of sponsoring health care organizations,” said Cone Health Director of Nursing Research Marjorie Jenkins, PhD, RN, NEA-BC, FACHE. “The sponsors helped us to create an environment in which nurses and other disciplines could collaborate, raising the bar and growing a culture in which care teams can innovate.”

The 2016 symposium was planned by Jessica Buckner, Jenny Clapp, Barbara Deskins, Jennifer Fencl, Christopher Golding, Eva Hyde, Marjorie Jenkins, Danyel Johnson, Nita Johnston, Kathleen Kearney, Brenda Murphy, Denise Rhew, Carlita Brady, Stacey Toben and Marcel Turner.

Jennifer Fencl, DNP, RN, CNS, CNOR, Cone Health’s interim executive director for clinical support and research, and clinical nurse specialist for operative services, said, “We want to thank the nurses who participated in the symposium, from across the state of North Carolina, from the coast to the mountains, from Wilmington to Asheville, who showcased the amazing work that they’re involved in each and every day.”