Blazing the Nursing Trail with Technology to Map the Field

Tuesday, 19 November 2013: 8:30 AM

Julie A. Jones, RN, MS
Prism Department, Fletcher Allen Health Care, Burlington, VT
Hollie Shaner-McRae, DNP, RN, FAAN
Nursing Education and Research, Fletcher Allen Health Care, Burlington, VT

Learning Objective 1: The learner will be able to identify technology tools which map geographical sites that nurses have contributed to the local community

Learning Objective 2: The learner will be able to describe how technology can engage nurses to contribute to the documentation of nursing history at the local history

Purpose: Consistent with the three of the four elements of the 2013 Call to action, the Blazing Nurses Trail project assists nurses to create a Legacy, Engage in Collaboration and Embrace Technology to honor, document and make visible the work of nurses worldwide in both present times and the past.

Methods:  Inspired by the work of Arlee Hoyt McGee’s Nurses Walk in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada,  the Nurses Trail project uses web based mapping technology, and a blog to honor nursing’s heritage and identify locations where nurses have contributed to the health of communities globally. The Blazing Nursing Trail project is enables nurses to document their work effort (current and historic), adding to the amalgam of nursing contributions to the wellbeing of humanity globally.

Results: An interactive, Wikipedia-like platform has been established, along with guidelines for use. Through technology and collaboration nurses are literally “on the map.”

Conclusion:  The STTI Call to Action set forth by President Suzanne Prevost stimulated expedited development of our project, which had been in embryonic form for nearly ten years. The Blazing Nurses Trail team used creativity and innovation to design a resource consistent with the call to action creating a resource for nurses to leave a ‘virtual legacy’ on the map.  This initiative may serve as a model for other regions seeking ways to engage members to make visible the work of nursing, honor nursing practice and contribute to the legacy of the nursing profession globally.