More than 150 nurses participated in the two-day Nurses Forum, which was held Sunday and Monday at the ISTH 2015 Congress.

MauraMalone

Maura Malone

The Nurses Forum is a special session that was launched at the ISTH 2005 Congress in Sydney, Australia. Its goal is to provide nurses and allied health professionals, from around the world, with an opportunity to share practice-related knowledge pertaining to disorders of hemostasis and thrombosis in both pediatric and adult populations, according to forum coordinator and moderator, Maura Malone.

“The forum, along with monthly conference calls, allows nurses from developed and developing countries to share information, best practices, case studies and guidelines for hemostasis and thrombosis practices,” said Malone, a hemophilia and thrombosis clinical specialist and instructor in medicine at Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth, Dartmouth Hitchcock Comprehensive Hemophilia & Thrombosis Center, Lebanon, New Hampshire, U.S.A.

It also allows for mentoring and networking, she added.

These activities strengthen international links, establish connections among nurses, expand knowledge, and provide opportunities for outreach to those establishing practices in developing countries, she said.

This year’s forum began with presentations concerning the Canadian perspective on thrombosis management and hemophilia care, followed by oral communications and poster presentations on a variety of topics, such as hemophilia and aging. Other sessions focused on innovation in nursing practice and on education, adherence, and quality of life.

The first day also featured an interactive “Literature Review Workshop.”

Workshop facilitator Fiona Newall, director of nursing research and a clinical nurse consultant, anticoagulation, at Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne, Australia, said participants received “high-level guidance regarding evidence-based recommendations to optimize the process and outcomes relating to patient education.”

The goal was development of a position paper specifically focused on patient education and addressing both patient education strategies and key future research directions, she said.

The second day of the forum featured a session on challenges in delivering care in resource-limited countries, as well as the presentation of a number of peer-reviewed abstracts.

Among the many highlights of the forum, according to Malone, were presentations titled:

  • The DDAVP Challenge: An Audit to Assess Practice in a UK Haemophilia Centre
  • Closing the Gap: A Multidisciplinary Approach to Developing Local Services for Rural and Remote Patients with Bleeding Disorders
  • Expanding the Knowledge Base: Opportunities and Challenges for Allied Professionals in Bleeding Disorder Research in Canada, and
  • National Patient Needs Assessment of HTC Patients in the U.S.

The last-mentioned paper, which was presented by Regina Butler, director of the mid Atlantic/Region III HTCs,  HTC nurse coordinator at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and a member of the forum planning committee, included a report on the first ever U.S. National Needs Assessment of patients and caregivers at Hemophilia Treatment Centers (HTCs).

“With over 4,000 responses to a 4-page survey, it was also the largest survey in the United States for individuals with bleeding disorders. Overall, patients reported that they receive services, care, and information that they need, and that the care, services, and information meet their needs well, or very well,” she said, adding that 97% reported that all of their needs were met, and that HTC care is important.

Butler said the Nurses Forum provides an important opportunity to incorporate the nursing perspective and practical application of scientific advances to improve patient outcomes.

“This is a rare opportunity for nurses to collaborate with one another and with other disciplines to achieve common goals. Contact lists of people with similar interests have been created and the planning committee looks forward to using topics and ideas to plan and present webinars to provide information, share ideas, and recruit colleagues to become more active in ISTH,” she said.

By Sharon Worcester |June 22, 2015