Thursday, July 12, 2007
This presentation is part of : Innovative Classroom and Clinical Strategies to Integrate EBP
International Nursing: Opportunity to Collaborate with Ecuadorian Health Leaders
Roxena Wotring, MS, RN, Arizona State University College of Nursing & Healthcare Innovation, Phoenix, AZ, USA

   Nursing faculty, along with undergraduate and graduate students, have spent the last three summers in a learning immersion project in Ecuador.  Part of the experience in the Amazonia region was working in a small, government-owned hospital as well as developing and providing a health fair attended by over 160 villagers.

            In addition, the experience included, meeting with the Director of the Quito College of Nursing and the Director of the Catholic hospital system.  Both organizations are anxious to participate in faculty/student exchanges with an emphasis on collaborating on evidence- based clinical issues, projects and studies.  Currently, a project is being initiated to develop Spanish PowerPoint modules for evidence-based nursing instruction in the academic and hospital arenas.  Further, plans are underway to bring both Directors to an EBP-mentor workshop in 2007.   

            Additionally, a serendipitous adventure in the Andean region was seized by the group. The Mayor (a physician) invited the students and faculty to prepare an educational program to be presented to the regional schools and local hospital and clinic. Spanish-language health promotion education materials are under development, highlighting the most urgent needs of the region (lice, nutrition, infant mortality, dental health and infection-control) .  A pilot project was implemented this past summer and future projects are in development, accompanied by a wide range of political, cultural, language and economic issues.             Finally, the process of developing a formal collaborative agreement between these communities in Ecuador and the university is in progress with support from the Mayor/physician, the Ecuadorian Ambassador and nursing faculty. Specific strategies, challenges, triumphs and logistics will be included in this presentation, along with ‘tales from the field’ and ‘student stories’ about the experience of international nursing.