Meet the 2009 CANNT Bursary, award and research grant winners.
Subject: Trade and professional associations (Conferences, meetings and seminars)
Trade and professional associations (Rites, ceremonies and celebrations)
Research grants (Management)
Nurses (Conferences, meetings and seminars)
Nurses (Achievements and awards)
Nephrologists (Conferences, meetings and seminars)
Nephrologists (Achievements and awards)
Pub Date: 01/01/2010
Publication: Name: CANNT Journal Publisher: Canadian Association of Nephrology Nurses & Technologists Audience: Trade Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Health care industry Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2010 Canadian Association of Nephrology Nurses & Technologists ISSN: 1498-5136
Issue: Date: Jan-March, 2010 Source Volume: 20 Source Issue: 1
Topic: Event Code: 200 Management dynamics Computer Subject: Company business management
Product: Product Code: 8620000 Professional Membership Assns; 8043100 Nurses NAICS Code: 81392 Professional Organizations; 621399 Offices of All Other Miscellaneous Health Practitioners SIC Code: 8621 Professional organizations
Geographic: Geographic Scope: Canada Geographic Code: 1CANA Canada
Accession Number: 223216282
Full Text: Sponsored by Fresenius Medical Care

Monique Moore, recipient of the Frances Boutilier Bursary (Baccalaureate level)

By Monique Moore, RN, CNeph(C), staff nurse, Cornwall Dialysis Clinic, Cornwall, Ontario

In 1996, I graduated with honours, second in my class from the diploma program at the St. Lawrence College in Cornwall, Ontario. After proudly obtaining my RN licence in 1997, I entered the nursing field at a time when few jobs where available. Therefore, to make ends meet I worked three casual jobs, commuting to Ottawa to the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) pediatric surgery, Riverside Hospital surgical floor and the Victorian Order of Nurses (VON) in Casselman. I enjoyed nursing more then I had anticipated, having aha! moments almost daily. I knew I was growing as a registered nurse. I continued with night courses to obtain my degree all the while paying off my Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP), as my family could not assist me. With restructuring, I went amiss at the end of the VON home care program, and the Riverside became an ambulatory urgency care centre. I then found myself at the Heart Institute step down unit and at the Canadian Blood Services (CBS). In 1998, I accepted a full-time position with CBS. There, I grew from many opportunities within the company--charge nurse on clinics, internal audit nurse, preceptor for new staff and assistant liaison nurse. But, after six years of commuting an hour drive to Ottawa from home, and now a mother to a second son, I needed to refocus my career. My "Aha!" moments faded with irregular work hours and little babes at home. I had aspirations to direct myself towards becoming an educator, but my goal to obtain my degree was again halted. This is when a dear friend, Jennifer Van deGlind, suggested trying for a position in dialysis. The dialysis door opened to me at the Ottawa Carleton Dialysis Clinic and Cornwall Dialysis clinics. I was blessed with a wonderful educator, Alice Smith, who guided me into the world of hemodialysis, with the kind and patient staff from both clinics.


The "Aha!" moments were plentiful in dialysis, as you know. In 2006, my manager Kathaleen Bijman began challenging me. Together, we brought forth a health and safety committee, which stemmed into a CANNT presentation regarding striving for a no-fault culture affiliated with incident reporting. The conference cemented my feet in the dialysis specialty. I was in the perfect situation--doing direct patient care, teaching and growing. In 2007, I participated in a preceptor seminar, continued to participate in the CANNT dinners and achieved my certification in nephrology. After studying for my certification, I knew this was now a more opportune time to continue with my degree. Now, four-and-a-half years in dialysis, my degree nearly completed, I have increased perspectives, tools and knowledge. I had the opportunity to present again at this year's CANNT conference regarding a falls risks tool. Receiving the Frances Boutilier Bursary has assisted with the financial burden to achieve my degree, but more so it has solidified the value of ongoing learning. Continued education gives not only to you, but also to your patients and team.

As a proud CANNT member, I encourage anyone considering continuing their education to apply for the bursaries, so that with your new knowledge and "Aha!" moments you will know you have your dialysis peers supporting you along the way. Many a thank you to CANNT and its members.

Darrell Cuza, recipient of the Technical Bursary

By Darrell Cuza, Biomedical Technologist in dialysis, Eastern Health, St. John's, Newfoundland

Hi, my name is Darrell Cuza and I have been employed by Eastern Health in St. John's, Newfoundland, as a Biomedical Technologist in dialysis for the past 10 years. Over the years, I have been involved in evaluating new equipment, implementing new policies and procedures within my unit and planning for new satellite dialysis units across Newfoundland and Labrador.


I have attended several CANNT conferences, have received valuable information and have made friends across the country. In 2003, I received my cdt certification in dialysis and I have been involved in setting the home dialysis standards. I regularly report in the CANNT Journal as a liaison.

Receiving the CANNT Technical Bursary was very gratifying. It provides some financial assistance for me, as I continue my Bachelor of Technology degree at Memorial University. More importantly, the award bestows a sense of recognition for the hard work it takes to further my education while maintaining fulltime employment.

Joanne Plamondon, recipient of the CANNT 2009 Research Grant

By Joanne Plamondon RN, CDE, CNeph(C), Renal Health Nurse Clinician, CKD Clinic, St. Boniface General Hospital, Winnipeg, Manitoba

I'm a renal health nurse clinician working in the chronic kidney disease (CKD) clinic at St. Boniface General Hospital (SBGH) in Winnipeg. I graduated from SBGH with a diploma of nursing in 1984. Within my first year of working on a medical unit, I was asked if I would be interested in taking the hemodialysis (HD) course. I thought to myself, "What's that?" I knew the basic concept of dialysis, but there wasn't a lot of information back then about dialysis, and my only experience was doing peritoneal dialysis (PD) bag exchanges for hospitalized patients. Once I completed my training, I worked full-time in our I'm a renal health nurse clinician working in the chronic kidney disease (CKD) clinic at St. Boniface General Hospital (SBGH) in Winnipeg. I graduated from SBGH with a diploma of nursing in 1984. Within my first year of working on a medical unit, I was asked if I would be interested in taking the hemodialysis (HD) course. I thought to myself, "What's that?" I knew the basic concept of dialysis, but there wasn't a lot of information back then about dialysis, and my only experience was doing peritoneal dialysis (PD) bag exchanges for hospitalized patients. Once I completed my training, I worked full-time in our seven-bed HD unit, which was equipped with the old Drake Willock and IPD machines! Yes, I am dating myself ...


Twenty-five years later, I'm still here! I've had many wonderful opportunities to work in various areas of nephrology nursing over the years. I achieved my certifications in diabetes education (CDE) in 2001, and in nephrology (CNeph(C)) in 2002 through the Canadian Nurses' Association. These have provided me with extensive knowledge in the area of renal disease and diabetes. I have been actively involved in many committees including: Manitoba Renal Program (MRP) Renal Health Outreach alliance initiative, MRP clinical working group, home dialysis working group, transplant process improvement initiative, MRP Renal Research Development Committee, SBGH CKD clinic process improvement initiative and administrator for the National Amgen Nephrology Nursing e-journal.

In 2009, I was honoured to receive a nursing excellence award from SBGH. To be recognized by my peers and nurse manager reinforces my faith in my abilities and encourages me to continue to seek new challenges and opportunities. I'm very fortunate to be working in a dynamic and supportive environment at SBGH and within the MRP.

At present, I'm involved in a research project with a First Nation community to obtain their input into the method of delivery of renal health outreach education, the required components of this education and the cultural appropriateness of the content and delivery method. The title of the study is "Perceptions of Key Stakeholders Regarding Future Directions for Renal Health Outreach (RHO)". The recognition of this research grant also goes to my co-investigators, Lesley Cotsianis, OT, and Allison Lindsay, RN, both from the Winnipeg Health Sciences Centre. I believe that without them this project wouldn't have happened. We are extremely grateful to receive this award, which will allow us to complete our project. We look forward to sharing the outcomes of this study. I now leave you with a quote: "Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.--Herman Cain." "Do one thing a day that scares you!"

Thank you et merci beaucoup.

Karelle Robichaud, recipient of the Franca Tantalo Bursary (Graduate Level)

By Karelle Robichaud, B.Sc.Inf., Infirmiere en hemodialyse et Monitrice Clinique/Hemodialysis Nurse and Clinical Instructor, Hopital Georges L. Dumont, Moncton, Nouveau-Brunswick

My passion for nephrology began when I was in my third year of the nursing program, and I did a training course at the nephrology unit. After that training course, I returned to the nephrology unit in order to do my preceptorship while in my fourth year of the program. I did my bachelor's degree in nursing at Universite de Moncton and graduated in January 2006. When I graduated, I started to work at Georges L. Dumont hospital, in Moncton, New Brunswick.


Since then, I have been working in the nephrology unit. In September 2006, I started my nursing master's at Universite de Moncton. After that, in May 2007, I received the Entry-Level Nurse Achievement Award from the Nurse Association of New Brunswick. At that time, I was also doing my hemodialysis training, where I have been working ever since. Meanwhile, I had three contracts with the Universite de Moncton as a clinical instructor for student nurses studying nephrology.

I hope to earn my master's degree in the fall of 2010. When I receive my diploma, I would like to convey my knowledge and expertise in nephrology to patients living with a kidney disease and help them address the challenges that it brings. I would also like to continue working in nephrology research and help the profession develop with evidence-based data.

As I'm at the end of my master's program, it is an honour for me to receive the Franca Tantalo Bursary. This bursary will help me with my research on hemodialysis patients and it will also help me finish my thesis. Thank you very much.

Shelley Burnett, recipient of the CANNT 2009 Excellence in Practice Award, Clinical Practice

By Shelley Burnett, RN, Integrated Care Clinic, St. Paul's Hospital, Vancouver, British Columbia

I received my diploma in nursing from British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) in 1978. Much of the next 15 years I spent working in intensive care in both Montreal and Vancouver. During that time, encountered many dialysis patients in the ICU and, consequently, became interested in nephrology nursing, which led me to enrol in the BCIT Nephrology Nursing Certificate Program. During my clinical practice at BCIT, I had the good fortune of working in the CKD program at St. Paul's Hospital in Vancouver. The idea of working in a more preventive role was very appealing and left a lasting impression on me.


My first job in the renal program at St. Paul's was in hemodialysis nursing, which provided me with better insight into what life was like for a dialysis patient. This experience helped prepare me for the area that really interested me, chronic kidney disease (CKD) nursing. My opportunity to work in the Kidney Function Clinic came in 2003. During my first few years in our clinic I learne a great deal about not only renal disease, but also about chronic disease management. My current position is case manager of the St. Paul's Integrated Care Clinic. Our clinic cares for patients with chronic renal failure plus either diabetes and/or heart failure. Holistically caring for patients is the most rewarding job I can imagine.

To receive this award is such an honour--to be recognized by my peers is very gratifying. I am so fortunate to be surrounded by an incredible team of hard working professionals that exemplifies the culture of a caring attitude, and commitment to improving the lives of renal patients. The team inspires me on a daily basis.

Thank you, CANNT, for your ongoing commitment to support and enhance the knowledge of professionals who care for renal patients.

Rosa Marticorena, recipient of the Excellence in Practice Award, Research

By Rosa Marticorena, RN, Clinical Research Coordinator, Nephrology Research Office, St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, Ontario

I completed my undergraduate education in nursing at the Sick Children's Hospital Nursing School, Federico Villarreal University in Lima, Peru, in 1982. At that time, our nursing school gave us the designation of pediatric nurses by training, and I thought that my career would develop at the Sick Children's Burn Unit, in which I had spent the last year of my training. I worked simultaneously in intensive care and it was while I was looking after a patient with acute renal disease that the opportunity for training in dialysis came my way. I was very lucky--paid training was a luxury. The first five years I spent in nephrology were in the San Borja Clinic in Lima. This is where I learned the science behind dialysis and it was thanks to my manager, Maria Sanchez, and nurse in charge, Aurora Calderon, that I was able to learn in detail how quality nephrology nursing care had to be provided. Those were the times in which we had to declot the Scribner Shunts by ourselves and when the patient did not have an access, we had to do direct arterial puncture until a Scribner shunt or a single lumen catheter was inserted. Cannulation was an art that you were taught by the most experienced cannulators. We treated it with upmost respect. You only had one chance to cannulate. Only the most experienced nurses with proven cannulation skills would be assigned to cannulate a new fistula. I will never forget the time I was assigned to one--it made me feel that I had truly earned the status of a "hemo nurse". I believe my former experience marked my interest in access care.


I started working in hemodialysis at Toronto General Hospital and the Wellesley Hospital in 1989 and, since then, worked in several other hemodialysis units in Ontario. It was in 1998, that I had the opportunity to start my research career in nephrology. Dr. Sandra Donnelly, Principal Investigator and Medical Director of the hemodialysis unit at St. Michael's Hospital, encouraged me to pursue training in clinical epidemiology at the University of Toronto. I completed the post graduate diploma in 2004.

Since the completion of the program, and with the continuous support and guidance of Dr. Donnelly, I was able to use the research skills obtained in the diploma program and initiate projects that would focus on improvement of access care at St. Michael's Hospital, mostly related to cannulation, specifically buttonhole cannulation. Research in this area, as well as in other areas of access care is greatly needed. We, as nurses, can contribute immensely to this aspect of care of the renal patient, and I think here at St. Michael's Hospital, we will be able to help.

I would like to take the opportunity to thank the hemodialysis nurses, home hemodialysis nurses, nocturnal nurses and nurse practitioner Alison Thomas, research staff in the nephrology research office: Stella Curvelo, Niki Dacouris and Jennie Huckle, as well as all the investigators in the nephrology research office: Dr. Marc B. Goldstein, Dr. Phil A. McFarlane and Dr. Ron Wald who, together with Dr. Donnelly, have provided continuous support with these project.

Laurie Pritchard, recipient of the CANNT 2009 Excellence in Practice Award, Education

By Laurie Pritchard, RN, BScN, CNeph(C), Care Specialist, Renal and Chronic Disease Management, Orillia Soldiers' Memorial Hospital, Orillia, Ontario

What an honour and a privilege to receive the Excellence in Education award. Thank you to my fellow peers who nominated me and the CANNT board of directors for agreeing to give me this award.


Nephrology nursing is rewarding on so many levels. We have the opportunity to work within a multidisciplinary team, we really get to know our patients, we are constantly teaching and learning from our patients, as well as each other, the concepts in nephrology are continually interesting, and there are many more reasons that make me appreciate how fortunate I am to be part of this amazing group at Soldiers' in Orillia, as well as a Canadian nephrology nurse.

The time I spent as a CANNT VP for Ontario and website coordinator reinforced the previous reasons and gave me an opportunity to get to know nephrology nurses from across the country. I can't emphasize enough the value of that time and encourage everyone to consider becoming involved in our organization.

Sponsored by CANNT

Norma Jean Martel, recipient of the Certification/Recertification Bursary

By Norma Jean Martel, RN, CNeph(C), Nephrology Leader Clinical Operations, In Centre Hemodialysis, Hemodialysis, Home Dialysis and Renal Clinic, Capital District Health Authority, Halifax, Nova Scotia

My name is Norma Jean Martel. I graduated from St. Martha's School of Nursing in 1992. I recently have completed my BScN from the University of Victoria. I began working in nephrology nursing in 1999, and continue to stay within this specialty area, as I am committed to helping those living with Chronic Kidney Disease achieve their optimal health care goals. I am currently the Nephrology Leader Clinical Operations for In Centre Hemodialysis Halifax, Dartmouth General Hemodialysis, Home Dialysis Program and Renal Clinic in Nova Scotia. In my current role, I have the opportunity to coach and mentor nephrology nurses to continue to increase their knowledge of the specialty area through certification or ongoing educational opportunities.


I am extremely honoured to have received the ISPD bursary-certification/recertification. Completing the certification in nephrology nursing has been a huge accomplishment for me personally and professionally. Obtaining and maintaining certification is an excellent learning opportunity to remain current and up to date in nephrology nursing. I am committed to life-long learning and obtaining certification in nephrology nursing has assisted me in this journey. I would like to take this opportunity to thank CANNT for their financial support to help me achieve this goal. Receiving funding through CANNT and the ISPD bursary shows their commitment to assisting their membership with ongoing educational support.

Jane Ridley, Barbara Wilson, Lori Harwood, and Heather K. Laschinger, recipients of the CANNT 2009 Journal Award

By Jane Ridley, RN(EC), MScN, CNeph(C), Nurse Practitioner, Nephrology Program, University Campus, London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario

On behalf of my co-authors, Barb Wilson, Lori Harwood, and Dr. Heather Laschinger, I am pleased to accept the CANNT Journal Award. We would like to thank CANNT, as the research that generated this article was funded by a CANNT Research Grant.


Barb, Lori, and I are advanced practice nurses/nurse practitioners in the London Health Sciences Centre Regional Renal Program. Our primary area of responsibility is hemodialysis. We are involved in a number of tasks and projects. I was fortunate enough to be involved with the development of the Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario Best Practice Guideline (RNAO BPG) for Decision Support for Adults Living with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD). I am at present working with a multidisciplinary team developing an advance care planning program for hemodialysis patients. Lori is pursuing her PhD, with a focus on exploring the wider determinants of dialysis modality selection. Barb is involved in a number of projects and is currently leading a study exploring nurses' experiences with cannulation of arterio-venous fistulae.

We had previously been involved in implementing and studying the impact of a renal nursing professional practice model. Our observations from that study sparked our interest in work environment, health outcomes, and magnet hospital traits in Canadian nephrology nursing.

We were fortunate to work with Dr. Heather Laschinger, a renowned nurse researcher and educator from the University of Western Ontario, who is always willing to share her expertise.

We are honoured to accept this award.

Editor's note: Jane Ridley and her colleagues published their research article "Work environment, health outcomes, and magnet hospital traits in the Canadian nephrology nursing scene" in the January-March 2009 issue of the CANNT Journal.

King Tai Chan, recipient of the Certification/Recertification Bursary

By King Tai Chan, RN, CNeph(C), Staff Nurse, Hemodialysis Unit, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre,Toronto, Ontario

First of all, I am delighted to receive this CANNT award (Certification/Recertification Bursary) of recertification in nephrology nursing for the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) CNeph(C) examination. Second, I strongly believe that, as nephrology nurses, we do need to be recognized as a specialty nurse within CNA for our profession.


It is my great pleasure to share my professional experiences with you. As a hemodialysis nurse for nine years at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto, this job gives me a lot of opportunities to expose myself to different ideas on how to sustain the end stage renal disease patients' lives by providing hemodialysis care or serving as a bridge to facilitate the kidney transplantation when the opportunity presents itself.

I always strive to pursue my profession further by attending different kinds of conferences and seminars, which provide in-depth and most updated nephrology knowledge in the field. Patients will benefit, too, with nephrology nurses practising with added knowledge. Proactively participating in the patient council of our dialysis unit at Sunnybrook is another way I try to enrich my nephrology nursing experience. I have been a member of the council for several years and also a patient advocate. I believe I try to understand what is the most important in gaining the hemodialysis patient's trust and, at the same time, try to maintain harmony in the dialysis unit.

Barbara L. Paterson, recipient of the 2009 CANNT Manuscript Award

By Barbara L. Paterson, RN, PhD, Professor and Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Chronic Illness, University of New Brunswick Faculty of Nursing, Fredericton, New Brunswick

I am a professor at the University of New Brunswick. I am also one of two nurses in Canada who is a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair. My area of expertise is chronic illness. The research that we presented in our manuscript in the second of two studies conducted with members of Elsipogtog First Nation in New Brunswick is about kidney disease. The first project, funded by the Atlantic Aboriginal Health Research Program, was designed to find out why so many people with chronic kidney disease in Elsipogtog First Nation were not following their plan of care, and what could be done about it. In that study, we identified a need for a toolkit that was designed to meet the needs of Aboriginal people receiving dialysis and their families. We also recognized that there was a need to teach health care practitioners who were unfamiliar with Aboriginal peoples about some of the common understandings and beliefs of many Aboriginal peoples.


The second project was funded by the Kidney Foundation of Canada. It entailed a group of community members who were people on dialysis, relatives of people on dialysis, or health care practitioners meeting with me and another academic over a two-year period to decide what to include in a toolkit for Aboriginal people on dialysis. We reviewed other materials (e.g., videos, books, pamphlets, websites) about dialysis and we looked at toolkits that had been developed for other purposes. We also conducted interviews with community members on dialysis, family members, elders, and health care practitioners to learn from them about what they viewed as essential in such a toolkit. In addition, we consulted with experts in Aboriginal health and nephrology. Because we soon realized that we needed to narrow the limits of the toolkit to be manageable and to best meet the needs of the community, we restricted the toolkit to hemodialysis delivered in a dialysis unit and to the needs of people beginning or anticipating dialysis.

I was thrilled to learn that we were recipients of the award because it was recognition of the effort and commitment that the research team and the community of Elsipogtog First Nation have expended to make the toolkit accessible, relevant and culturally appropriate to the Aboriginal peoples of Canada. It provides us an opportunity to help health care practitioners to be aware of the toolkit, as well as the need for culturally relevant teaching materials. On behalf of our research team, I thank CANNT for the award and for the recognition of our efforts.

Editor's note: Barbara Paterson and her colleagues published their research article "Ripples in the water: A toolkit for Aboriginal people on hemodialysis" in this issue of the CANNT Journal.

Kimmy Lau, recipient of the CANNT 2009 Poster Award (1st place)

By Kimmy Lau, RN, MN, CNeph(C), Program Coordinator, York Central Hospital, York Region Chronic Kidney Disease Program, Ontario

It is a great honour for us to win first place for the CANNT 2009 Poster Award. I greatly appreciate the leadership team of the CKD program in the support of quality improvement projects and commitment of evidence-based practices. I extend my thanks to them and to our team. I started my nephrology nursing in 1989 at Toronto Western Hospital, as a staff nurse at the nephrology in-patient unit and from there I moved on to hemodialysis and home dialysis. I took up the challenge as the clinical practice leader of Vascular Access and Progressive Renal Insufficiency (PRI) Program at York Central Hospital in 2000. Recently, I assumed a new leadership role as the program coordinator for the PRI and home dialysis programs at York Central Hospital.


Our poster described the effectiveness of Hepatitis B vaccination at the Progressive Renal Insufficiency clinic. At the planning phase of the project, the interdisciplinary team was extremely worried about the availability of funding for vaccines. We explored several means of obtaining financial resources. We were so excited that the leadership team was very supportive throughout the process and was committed to providing quality care for our chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients. Despite the extra costs of the Hepatitis B vaccines for the PRI clinic, the CKD program absorbed all the expenses of the vaccines. The project was initiated in January 2007 to provide the vaccines to patients with estimated glomerular filtration rates (eGFR) less than 25 mL/min. A chart review was conducted during the same period of time in the hemodialysis unit to compare the results of patients who received the vaccination. The results are encouraging: they show that 92.8% of our PRI patients have converted after vaccination.

Dr. Charest's expertise and interest in the project have guided us on our path to success.

It is a great learning experience for me to lead the project. It is enlightening for our team when our passion and persistence in the pursuit of excellence in patient care have been rewarded. We are so excited to share our results with the renal community. The CANNT conference has provided the channel for us.

Editor's note: The title of her poster at CANNT 2009 was "Research dissemination to clinical practice: Hepatitis B vaccination program at the progressive renal insufficiency clinic."

Rick Luscombe, recipient of the CANNT 2009 Poster Award (2nd place)

By Rick Luscombe, RN, BSN, CNeph(C),Vascular Access, Clinical Nurse Leader, Vancouver Coastal, Providence Health Care, St. Paul's Hospital, Vancouver, British Columbia

On behalf of the in-centre hemodialysis program at St Paul's Hospital in Vancouver, British Columbia, I would like to extend our thanks and appreciation for awarding our poster, "Catheter tip design: A question of functionality" second place.


The idea for the poster came from a catheter trial. The hemodialysis program was looking to change our current catheter because our contract with the existing company was about to expire. We trialed numerous catheters from three different companies. After the trial was finished, I was curious to see if the design of the catheter, regardless of the manufacturer, affected tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) usage. Comparing the different tip designs did show a difference in the amount of tPA used over a specific period of time.

Winning the award demonstrated to me that nursing research need not be daunting or laborious. Presenting a simple idea and reporting the results may help others wrestling with the same questions and problems.

Editor's note: The title of his poster at CANNT 2009 was "Catheter tip design: A question of functionality."

Nicole Aitken, Chris Horton, Debbie Norton, Cathy Nadiger and Elan Paluck, recipients of the CANNT 2009 Poster Award (3rd place)

By Cathy Nadiger, RN, BSN, CNeph(C), Renal Informatics Clinical Support, and Chris Horton, RN, Manager Integrated Renal Program, Regina Qu'Appelle Health Region, Regina, Saskatchewan

After establishment of our chronic kidney disease (CKD) program in 2001, a very detailed evaluation of the program was undertaken in 2004. Patient referrals to our program had increased quickly and significantly during that time period.


Dr. Elan Paluck, a research scientist from the health region's research department, and Nicole Aitken, BA(HON), took the lead as we embarked on the project. The Saskatchewan Ministry of Health assisted us in setting our measurement criteria. All members of the interdisciplinary team were consulted throughout the entire evaluation process.

The evaluation demonstrated that we did achieve the goal of delaying the progression of renal disease in the CKD client population. We were encouraged that the results from our program reflected and supported previous research.

It is with extreme gratitude that our group accepts the Poster Award from the 2009 CANNT conference in St. Johns, New Brunswick. The recognition of our work is rewarding and motivates us to look at new opportunities to share our expertise.

Editor's note: The title of their poster at CANNT 2009 was "Delaying renal replacement therapy: Is dialysis destiny? Evidence from the Regina Qu'Appelle Health region (RQHR) chronic renal insuffiency (CRI) program population.

Sponsored by Amgen

Judith Ferguson, recipient of the International Nursing Conference Travel Grant

By Judith Ferguson, RN, CNeph(C), Staff Nurse, Peritoneal Dialysis Program, York Central Hospital, Richmond Hill, Ontario

My nursing career spans over 40 years and I've had the privilege of working with so many caring and talented professionals. I graduated from Toronto East General Hospital TEGH) School of Nursing from a three-year diploma program. Following graduation I remained for several years at TEGH working on the orthopaedic surgery floor and also taught orthopaedic nursing at Centennial College. From there I accepted a position on long-term care at York Central Hospital(YCH) and then transferred to the medicine program (oncology, neurology, and nephrology).


While working on the medical floor, I became interested in nephrology nursing and completed the nephrology courses at Humber College. For the last 10 years I've been working in the peritoneal fialysis program at YCH with a dedicated multidisciplinary team. In 2002, I wrote and passed my nephrology certification exam--CNeph(C).

In order to increase my knowledge base, I participate on committees in the dialysis program and have attended many conferences. I received the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario (RNAO) Fellowship for wound care and attended the International Wound Care Course at the University of Toronto.

I'm a member of CANNT and have assisted with two poster presentations at CANNT conferences ("Success at Home" and "Peritoneal Dialysis: Home Renovation--Our Story"). As well, I'm a member the City-Wide Peritoneal Dialysis Interest Group and participate monthly at meetings at University Health Network (UHN) working on best practice guidelines in peritoneal dialysis.

It has been my privilege to preceptor many nursing students--providing direction to, collaborating with, and sharing knowledge and expertise. In addition, I provide PD review for the nurses studying for their CNeph(C) exam. At present I'm involved with the development and implementation of peritoneal dialysis education sessions with Community Care Access Centres (CCACs) in the community.

It is a great honour to receive the Amgen Canada International Travel Grant Award. This grant will allow me to share knowledge learned to strengthen and build upon best practices within our peritoneal dialysis program and community.

Manon Campbell, recipient of the Nephrology Research Grant, Novice 2009

By Manon Campbell, RN, CNeph(C), Registered Nurse General Nephrology Clinic, Lead Nurse Telemedicine Program, Division of Nephrology at The Ottawa Hospital in Ottawa, Ontario/Infirmiere autorisee en Clinique de nephrologie generale, Infirmiere responsable du programme de telemedecine Division de nephrologie a l'Hopital d'Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario

As the recipient of the CANNT Novice Research Award, I would like to express my appreciation for a number of things. The financial component helps defray the costs associated with the study. The stamp of credibility it lends to the project is an affirmation that we are on the right track in our efforts to improve patient care. Finally, it is an encouragement for me, a regular RN, who has, up until this point, had no aspirations to pursue research.


My nursing career began in 1987 after obtaining a nursing sciences diploma in Ottawa. The neuro-surgical department of The Ottawa General Hospital was where I made my debut. A year later, the challenges in the neuro-observation neuro-observation unit attracted me and I worked there until January 2000. A conversation with a former colleague from the neuro-observation unit about hemodialysis enticed me to work in that area. It was not without fear that I embraced this new challenge. The world of central lines, fistulas and grafts, air emboli dangers, exsanguinations from line disconnections and more, was daunting initially, but with support from my new colleagues, I gained the required knowledge, training and confidence. This experience was the catalyst that rekindled my enthusiasm for professional learning.

In October 2006, I obtained a position in the general nephrology clinics, which has proved to be a very rich environment for further professional development. Growth opportunities have included: acquiring the CNeph(C), attending CANNT and Telehealth conferences, becoming the lead nurse of the telemedicine program of the nephrology division, and participating in a wide variety of training sessions at The Ottawa Hospital.

The most exciting part of this learning journey has been my involvement in the telemedicine initiative. Briefly, this involves "real-time" videoconference visits between nephrologists, patients and nurses. In this model of care, patients have a strong sense that their needs have been given priority. They receive care close to home, avoiding the cost, inconvenience, and extra time spent on trips to the city. This improvement has served to strengthen the relationship of trust between patients and caregivers. It is my strong belief that once a trust relationship is established, patients are far more receptive to our teaching and far more likely to make the real lifestyle changes that will improve their health.

As I reflect on leading the telemedicine study project, it is clear that the business of pursuing models of excellent patient care is not the exclusive responsibility of the "experts". A regular, part-time nurse can learn to write a research proposal, construct a study, interview and video stakeholders, and observe positive changes in the delivery of patient care. I am truly thankful for the excellent help and support from my fellow professionals at TOH.

Obtaining the CANNT Novice Research Award is an honour that has encouraged, motivated and enabled me to transfer the insights and experiences gained within this telemedicine initiative to other programs at TOH and beyond. For all that, I am very grateful.

Kimmy Lau, recipient of the Nephrology Research Grant, Experienced

By Kimmy Lau, RN, MN, CNeph(C), Program Coordinator, York Central Hospital, York Region Chronic Kidney Disease Program, Richmond Hill, Ontario

I am honoured to be the recipient of the CANNT 2009 Amgen Nephrology Research Grant. The research study is on implementing and evaluating the effectiveness of self-management in the Progressive Renal Insufficiency (PRI) Program. It is guided by the principles of Chronic Care Model, which has been proposed by renowned practitioners and their research as a highly effective means of helping CKD patients to manage their chronic illness and a positive lifestyle.

By using the self-management theory for CKD patients, the interdisciplinary team of the progressive renal insufficiency clinic provides patient education to meet patient needs and guidance to patients in setting and achieving their self-management goals. In doing so, patients are involved in decisions in maintaining optimal health while managing their CKD. This is a paradigm shift in patient education.

Suzanne Seiler, recipient of the Preceptorship/Mentorship Grant, Vascular Access

By Suzanne Seiler, RN, Vascular Access Nurse Case Manager, Renal Program, London Health Sciences Centre, University Campus, London, Ontario

I am a registered nurse at London Health Sciences working in the hemodialysis unit in a variety of roles since 1985. For the past two years, I have held the role of vascular access nurse case manager at the University hospital site. I am also responsible for the South Street Dialysis Unit (in London, Ontario) and four satellite dialysis units. There is a full-time vascular access nurse case manager (Kari Matos) working at the Victoria Hospital site.


Kari and I co-chair the Vascular Access Interest Group. This group consists of nurses from the various London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) dialysis units, as well as some of the satellite units. We also have nurse practitioners, educators, research and home hemodialysis nurses all being active participants of this group.

This group meets regularly throughout the year to discuss a variety of access issues, which include new procedures, new products, conferences, etc. We have developed a multitude of presentations for CANNT, and various published articles. We have developed a wide range of policies for the hemodialysis units, and many pamphlets for patient use.

We are planning on using the money that was received from Amgen for funding nurses to attend a vascular conference in Toronto in the spring. We are hoping to help as many members of the Vascular Access Interest Group attend this conference as possible.

Isabelle Thibeault, recipient of the Preceptorship/Mentorship Grant, Nurse Practitioner

Par Isabelle Thibeault, IPS, MScN, infirmiere praticienne specialisee en nephrologie, unite d'hemodialyse, CSSS de Chicoutimi, Ville Saguenay, Quebec

C'est en travaillant pendant pres de trois ans dans un village autochtone chez les Cris de l'Est de la Baie-James (Chisasibi) que j'ai eu le gout de travailler en role elargi. J'exerce maintenant notre merveilleuse profession en tant qu'infirmiere praticienne specialisee (IPS) en nephrologie au Centre de Sante et de Services Sociaux de Chicoutimi. Issue de la premiere cohorte d'IPS au Quebec qui a ete certifiee en octobre 2006, j'ai obtenu mon diplome de Maitrise en sciences infirmieres (praticienne specialisee en nephrologie) ainsi qu'un Diplome d'etudes superieures specialisees en sciences infirmieres (pratique specialisee en nephrologie) a l'Universite Laval. L'emergence de ce nouveau role de pratique infirmiere avancee au Quebec represente une solution novatrice pour ameliorer l'accessibilite et la continuite des soins. Je participe activement au developpement de la profession notamment en tant que representante en nephrologie sur le comite executif de l'Association des Infirmieres Praticiennes Specialisees du Quebec (AIPSQ).


L'hemodialyse est mon secteur d'activite et je suis entouree d'une equipe extraordinaire. J'assure un suivi et une presence constante sur le departement pour pallier aux besoins des patients hemodialyses et de leur famille ainsi qu'aux besoins des infirmieres et autres professionnels de la sante qui necessitent mon expertise. Un champ d'interet que j'ai particulierement a coeur est l'acces vasculaire. Element vital pour une hemodialyse de bonne qualite, l'acces vasculaire doit occuper une place ind eniable parmi les soins aux patients atteints d'insuffisance renale terminale. Pas d'acces vasculaire efficace, pas de dialyse efficace. Ainsi, le type et la qualite de cet acces ont un impact majeur dans la therapie de remplacement renal pour le patient, que ce soit au niveau physique, psychologique et familial. D'importantes consequences cliniques et socioeconomiques peuvent aussi etre engendrees. Cette bourse me permettra d'assister a un congres international sur l'acces vasculaire, contribuant ainsi a ameliorer mes connaissances et mes competences afin d'intervenir plus efficacement dans la gestion de la ligne de vie du patient hemodialyse.
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