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KCON partnership with Spectrum Health earns recognition

  • group of women in two rows, one holding plague

Posted on May 16, 2019

A partnership between the Kirkhof College of Nursing and the Spectrum Health Nursing Research Council was recognized by the publication "American Nurse Today" for providing innovative solutions to health care challenges.

The award was presented in early May as part of National Nurses Week. 

KCON faculty members Sandra Spoelstra and Marie VanderKooi established an academic-practice partnership with Spectrum Health System in 2017. Spoelstra said through the partnership, doctor of nursing practice students are matched with mentors to work collaboratively on quality improvement projects for the health care system.

Jennifer Kaiser, senior nurse researcher for Spectrum Health, said each project is identified by the nursing research council and fits within the scope of Spectrum's strategic initiatives.

DNP students who graduated in April worked on projects ranging from the design of a longitudinal plan of care, reduction of hospital falls or delirium in the elderly, creation of a toolkit to reduce the risk of opioid therapy overdose, to advanced care planning for primary care practices. 

Hosted by the research council, 23 DNP students presented posters highlighting the improvements their projects made within Spectrum Health.