CEDN Educates Nurses in Siberia

The use of Remote Presence (RP) technology is nothing new to the College of Nursing, as we’ve been using it to deliver our undergraduate education program in northern Saskatchewan since 2012, but using RP technology to deliver continuing education across the world is yet another success for the College of Nursing.

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Cheryl Cummings instructing nurses in Yakutsk using Remote Presence technology

Dean Dr. Lorna Butler has been creating partnerships with the North Eastern Federal University College of Nursing in Yakutsk, a remote city in Eastern Siberia for a couple of years. In November 2014, RP technology was delivered to Yakutsk. In January 2015, Butler travelled to the Philippines to officially launch the use of robotics with innovators who are using RP technology in the Philippines and Siberia for the delivery of nursing education. And on Tuesday, April 28th, the first session of international nursing education between Canada and Siberia took place.

Continuing Education and Development for Nurses (CEDN) was approached by Dean Butler to help with this unique opportunity of providing continuing nursing education around the world. Cheryl Cummings, Clinical Education Coordinator at CEDN delivered the first session. “The nurses were very interested and engaged. Regardless of what method was being used to deliver the training, they just wanted to know how to best care for their patients. Using the RP-Xpress technology made it very easy to connect with our colleagues in Siberia.  I’m really looking forward to doing it again!”

The first of seven sessions was focused on the nursing care of a patient who has had a heart attack and was attended by 18 participants.  The second session, nursing care of a patient with a stroke, was attended by 28 participants, including the head of the cerebral flow unit.  “Preparing to deliver these sessions included an initial meeting with nurse leaders in Yakutsk using RP technology to get a sense of the learning needs of the nurses there,” said Director of CEDN Cathy Jeffery. “Participants’ questions during the education sessions and through an evaluation of each session has indicated that the nurses are keenly interested in what nursing looks like in Saskatchewan and Canada.  It is exciting to contribute to the professional development of nurses in Yakutsk.  The use of RP technology during these international sessions also helps teach us how we can use this strategy to deliver continuing education for nurses in rural and remote areas in our province.”  

“This collaboration is an excellent example of living our values of unconditional positive regard and social justice,” said Dean Butler. “Registered Nurses in Yakutsk are isolated, with little opportunity for colleagues to connect with each other. When they asked us to help provide continuing education, we seized the opportunity. The work of CEDN to deliver these sessions has extended the use of Remote Presence technology and has greatly exceeded the expectations of our Grand Challenge Canada Stars in Global health award. This is innovation in action!”

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