The changing face of nursing education in Auckland. Analysis of the University of Auckland student nurse cohorts over the last 10 years

Project code:  MHS014

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Julia Slark

Each year since 2006, the University of Auckland Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences Tracking Project has collected information on career intention, debt and income sources from healthcare students at entry to, and exit from, their respective programmes. Data contained in the database relates to the disciplines of medicine, nursing, pharmacy, health science and optometry. The specific aims for this summer studentship project include:

  1. Describe the patterns in key factors influencing nursing career choices
  2. Identify changes in demographics and trends in career choices over the last 10 years.
  3. Explore factors that influence nursing students at the University of Auckland from entry to exit from the programme.

Ethics approval is not required for this summer studentship project since approval is already covered by the Tracking project.

Skills

Use of large databases - data manipulation and cleaning

Statistical analysis - summary statistics, predictive statistics, Excel, SPSS

Writing for publication - it is intended that this project will result in a published research paper to which the student will contribute and receive authorship

What if New Zealand had 100 teenagers?: Translating youth health data into motion graphic video clips/infographics

Project code:  MHS021

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Terryann Clark

Background

The Youth2000 survey series are nationally representative health and wellbeing surveys of young people in secondary schools throughout NZ that were conducted in 2001, 2007 and 2012. There have been some significant findings - in terms of improvements and declines in health status. While we have this rich data, much of the information is not communicated back into the community well. We would like to explore the best ways to do this better.

This summer project aims to:

1. Identify key messages from the Youth2000 national youth health and wellbeing survey that should be available and communicated to youth, their families and communities.

2. Translate these key findings from the Youth2000 national youth health survey into more user-friendly and accessible formats for youth, their families and communities e.g https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QFrqTFRy-LU

3. Identify ways to communicate complex messages and information to the community through infographics and/or web-based communications strategies.  

Skills

This person should have experience with computer animation and infographics

1. Synthesis of research findings and identify key factors for community messaging

2. Explore the latest strategies for communicating health and social messaging

Silent Nights - Help Healing

Project code:  MHS050

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Dr Kathy Peri

Noise is a common complaint during hospital stays and various forms of noise can greatly impact on patients and staff in a hospital. Some studies have shown that serious impacts of unwanted noise on health include increased blood pressure, sleep loss, emotional exhaustion and slower recovery for patients and staff burnout.   

This project aims to measure the noise levels in several wards at Middlemore Hospital and build on previous descriptive information obtained during the Counties Manukau Health (CMH) Patient Experience Project. In addition this project will implement and test the Silent Hospitals Help Healing programme in one of the CMH wards.  

Skills

Literature search and review

Basic research skills including data collection methods eg noise levels in wards and interviews with patients and staff and implementation of a noise reduction programme.

Data interpretation and presentation

Professional scientific writing and the publication process 

The student will be based at the School of Nursing, University of Auckland  and Middlemore Hospital

Palliative care goes to the movies: Exploring the knowledge translation potential of research findings dramatised in a short film

Project code:  MHS051

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Lisa Williams

Caring (for) Lives is a 15-minute film that dramatises selected research findings from Te Pakeketanga: Living and Dying in Advanced Age. Te Pakeketanga is a three-year HRC-funded study examining the end of life circumstances of Māori and non-Māori people aged 85+. The film was created in collaboration with researchers from the Faculty of Arts to expand the scope of traditional research dissemination methods. The project will involve screening Caring (for) Lives to groups of stakeholders in the Auckland area (for example, the ADHB Palliative Care Governance Group) and exploring their views as to: 1) the usefulness of this method of knowledge translation; 2) their views on the issues raised by the study findings. As such, the project will provide important information to inform the development of a planned HRC Health Delivery grant and lead to a publication.

Skills

Skills learned:

  •          Research recruitment and organisation
  •          Focus group facilitation
  •          Research skills and report writing

The project will involve transcribing the focus group data and therefore applicants must be competent typists.

National audit of DHB mental health services’ metabolic screening policies

Project code:  MHS058

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Metabolic syndrome is a prevalent condition among people prescribed atypical antipsychotic medications, which are the mainstay of medical treatment for chronic mental illness such as schizophrenia. Metabolic syndrome is a risk factor for development of cardiovascular disease and diabetes, and is thought to contribute to the large and growing differences in life expectancy between people with severe mental illness and the general population. Most DHBs have policies on metabolic screening of people under their care who have a serious mental disorder and who are treated with atypical antipsychotics. This project will involve an audit of DHB policies against a standard developed from the literature. The project will be written up for publication in a peer reviewed journal and will contribute to development of a national standard for metabolic monitoring in mental health services.

Skills

Skills taught in this project will enable you to

  • Manage a research project
  • Conduct a literature search
  • Using referencing software
  • Develop an audit tool
  • Write a research report
  • Write for publication

You will join the group of summer students at the School of Nursing, and have the opportunity to participate in the academic and social programme provided.

Advance Care Planning and Hospice Patient Outcomes

Project code:  MHS060

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Rosemary Frey

Advance Care Planning (ACP) has been defined as ‘a voluntary process of discussion about future care between an individual and their care providers, irrespective of discipline’ which might include a discussion of ‘the individual’s concerns and wishes, their important values or personal goals for care; their understanding of their illness and prognosis; and their preferences and wishes for the type of care or treatment that may be beneficial in the future and the availability of these’ (Henry and Seymour, 2008).  However, evidence regarding the impact of ACP upon the type and nature of care received at the end of life is mixed (Freeborne et al, 2000) and warrants further exploration within the New Zealand context.

Purpose

The purpose of the current study is to explore the concordance between the care preferences expressed in Advance Care Plans and hospice patient outcomes.

Objectives

1) To examine the outcomes for patients at hospice who had developed a written advance care plan
2) To examine how closely these outcomes aligned with the patients expressed care preferences in their advance care plans

Research Design and Methods

A case study design will be used to guide the data collection from the records of decedent patients in one urban hospice.  A retrospective review of charts of those patients who had developed a written advance care plan will be utilised. This review will require the application of qualitative content analysis so that the key elements from the notes can be identified regarding the resident ACP written preferences and actual outcomes. Content analysis is "a research technique for making replicable and valid inferences from texts (or other meaningful matter) to the context of their use" (Krippendorff 2004, p. 18).  Using an inductive approach, the notes will be inspected and coded.  These codes will then be developed into meaningful themes that can best describe the relationship between stated care preferences and outcomes. Semi-structured interviews will be conducted with the key nurse involved in the last days of life to clarify issues not documented.

Skills

Skills taught: The research skills learnt will be in the form of using qualitative research methods to describe a process of patient care. Specifically, the student will learn technical research skills in the areas of document and content analysis as well as writing skills for publication.

How many hours per night is enough? A systematic review to identify optimal CPAP therapy use for sleep apnoea.

Project code:  MHS070

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Kim Ward

Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is a global health issue and continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), delivered overnight via face-mask is the go to treatment worldwide.  However, concern exists that patients under-utilise this therapy, despite a lack of consensus about what is good therapy use.  An array of studies are available regarding the hours per night and nights per week required for CPAP use, but which differ in opinion about what is optimal. 

This systematic review aims to identify from the current literature what constitutes optimal CPAP use of OSA. 

Skills

  • Literature search and review.
  • Basic research skills including data collection methods and data quality appraisal.
  • Data interpretation and presentation.
  • Professional scientific writing and the publication process.
  • The student will be based at the School of Nursing, University of Auckland.

What weight is given to patient and carer experience in the palliative care 'evidence hierarchy'?

Project code:  MHS094

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Merryn Gott 

Evidence based medicine (EBM) has come under criticism for 'devaluing the patient and carer agenda' (Greenlagh et al, 2015) by, for example, giving low status to patient experience within the hierarchy of evidence and paying limited attention to power imbalances that suppress the patient voice. Such bias may have particular implications for palliative care, which purports to place patient and family experience at the centre of research and practice. This project will involve conducting a systematic literature review to explore the weight given to patient and family experience within the palliative care 'evidence hierarchy'. The project will result in a publication and an editorial and be conducted in collaboration with a colleague from Flinders University.

References

Greenhalgh, T., Snow, R., Ryan, S., Rees, S., & Salisbury, H. (2015). Six ‘biases’ against patients and carers in evidence-based medicine. BMC medicine, 13(1), 1.

Skills

  • Systematic literature searching
  • Critical thinking
  • Writing for publication

What are the risk factors for loneliness in later life?

Project code:  MHS096

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Merryn Gott 

Research has shown that loneliness significantly increases both morbidity and mortality rates amongst older people. This project will involve conducting a systematic literature review to identify which older people are most at risk of experiencing social isolation and/or loneliness, focusing in particular upon socio-demographic factors (e.g. gender and partnership status), health factors (e.g. impact of dementia) and living situation (for example, impact of living rurally). It will support a National Science Challenge funded project exploring older people's experience of social isolation and loneliness and the effectiveness of an Age Concern befriending service to alleviate loneliness. The project will result in a publication.

Skills

  • Systematic literature searching
  • Evidence synthesis
  • Writing for publication

Palliative Care and Aiga Carers Among Pacific Communities

Project code:  MHS105

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Dr Ofa Dewes

Conduct a systematic literature review to identify what is currently known about how Pacific families and communities can be supported to provide palliative care for Pacific people dying in older age.

Present findings to Pacific community partners to identify research priorities, and appropriate methodologies, for developing a research programme in this area. The findings would strengthen a National Science Challenge bid currently under review in the Ageing Well stream, as well as a future HRC bid.

Contribute to scientific journal publications and conference presentations as well as an essay (1,000 words) in the Pacific column, Vaikoloa, NZ Journal of Primary Health Care.

 

Skills

Collaborate with Te Arai: Palliative Care and End of Life Care Research Group.

Pacific community and Pacific services engagement.

Literature review and critical appraisal.

Cultural competency, writing and presentation skills.

Ability to speak at least one Pacific language desirable.

Growing old with severe and enduring mental illness

Project code:  MHS110

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

As the New Zealand population ages the proportion of older adults (>65 years) with severe and enduring mental illness will grow. It is important therefore that the experiences and needs of this group are well understood by clinicians, service providers and policy makers. Currently there is minimal New Zealand research into any aspect of ageing with severe and enduring mental illness. This project involves an integrative review of literature an ageing with severe and enduring mental illness. The study will provide the basis for a peer reviewed publication and will inform teaching related to mental health in old age.

Skills

You will be taught how to:

  • Manage a research project
  • Conduct an integrative literature review
  • Using referencing software
  • Write a research report
  • Write for publication

You will join the group of summer students at the School of Nursing, and have the opportunity to participate in the academic and social programme provided.

Health professionals’ promotion of online health information and resources to older people with multiple morbidities: a systematic review

Project code:  MHS139

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Susan Waterworth

Older people are increasingly seeking health information from on-line resources. Importantly government policies are also promoting the use of on-line information and resources for health management, in particular self-management. However, the attitudes of health professionals can either facilitate or be a barrier to how older people perceive the usefulness and value of on-line resources. Determining critical success factors whereby health professionals support older people in their use of on-line information and resources, e.g. Apps is needed. This project involves a systematic review to identify the critical success factors and examples of internet resources e.g. Apps that are being used by older people who have multimorbidities. The study will provide the basis for a peer reviewed publication and will inform teaching related to self-management and older person’s health.

Skills

Conducting a systematic literature review Use referencing software. Write for publication. Prepare a presentation The School of Nursing has a group of summer students and you will have the opportunity to participate in the academic and social programme provided.

Going 'baby friendly' in Manurewa

Project code:  MHS140

Department

Nursing

Location

Auckland

Supervisor

Karen Hoare

To evaluate how Manurewa has become 'baby friendly'

The Global Strategy

UNICEF’s strategy for infant and young child feeding is based upon the Innocenti Declaration for the protection, promotion and support of breastfeeding. The Innocenti Declaration was adopted in 1990[1]* and was subsequently endorsed by the World Health Assembly and UNICEF’s Executive Board. Member states of the UN reaffirmed the relevance and the urgency of the four Innocenti targets in the Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding adopted by the World Health Assembly in May 2002.

The Baby Friendly Community Initiative (BFCI) aims to protect, promote and support breastfeeding for healthy mothers and babies. The New Zealand Breastfeeding Alliance (NZBA) is contracted by the Ministry of Health to facilitate the implementation of BFCI in community-based health services.

A BFCI accredited service has practices that protect, promote and support breastfeeding to enable mothers to initiate and sustain breastfeeding of their babies. When babies are fed a breastmilk substitute, their mothers will be provided with unbiased information, advice and ongoing support.

New Zealand's Seven Point Plan is based on the principles of The Ten Steps to SuccessfulBreastfeeding for a Baby Friendly Hospital, and is applied to all BFCI health services. In an effort to increase breastfeeding initiation and duration rates in New Zealand, the BFCI encourages and supports health services in the community to implement The Seven Point Plan.

  1. Have a written breastfeeding policy that routinely is communicated to all staff and volunteers.
  2. Train all health care providers in the knowledge and skills necessary to implement the breastfeeding policy.
  3. Inform pregnant women and their families about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.
  4. Support mothers to establish and maintain exclusive breastfeeding to six months.
  5. Encourage sustained breastfeeding beyond six months to two years or more, alongside the introduction of appropriate, adequate and safe complementary foods.
  6. Provide a welcoming atmosphere for breastfeeding families.
  7. Promote collaboration among health services, and between health services and the local community.

Greenstone Family Clinic in Manurewa is working towards becoming a fully accredited BFCI facility

Skills

Communication skills.

Survey skills.

Interview skills.

Transcription and data analysis of qualitative research.

[1]The Innocenti Declaration was produced and adopted by participants at the WHO/UNICEF policymakers' meeting on "Breastfeeding in the 1990s: A Global Initiative, co-sponsored by the United States Agency for International Development (A.I.D.) and the Swedish International Development Authority (SIDA), held at the Spedale degli Innocenti, Florence, Italy, on 30 July - 1 August 1990. The Declaration reflects the content of the original background document for the meeting and the views expressed in group and plenary sessions.