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Release: Immediate

UI nursing college aids school nurses with annual conference set for Sept. 24-25

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- About 150 school nurses and other professionals will attend the 24th annual School Nurse Conference Thursday, Sept. 24 and Friday, Sept. 25 at the University Park Holiday Inn in West Des Moines. The University of Iowa College of Nursing organizes the conference each year to help school nurses stay abreast of developments in the practice of school nursing.

The focus of this year's conference is on how school nurses can communicate more effectively with educators and document the effectiveness of the work they do in the school setting.

The featured speaker for this year's conference is Judith Igoe of the University of Colorado School of Nursing. Igoe, an Iowa graduate, is nationally recognized for her work in the area of school nursing. She will deliver presentations on measuring school nursing program outcomes and on teaching children to be their own health advocates.

School nursing is taking on added importance as social and economic changes move more health care out into the community, according to Ann Marie McCarthy, Ph.D., assistant professor of nursing at the UI. "School nursing is the pediatric nursing of the future," McCarthy said.

Working in the educational setting means school nurses also have to collaborate with teachers and school district administration, McCarthy said. "Children need to be healthy in order to learn."

"The conference is a great time for school nurses to get updated on what's going on in school nursing," Janice Denehy, Ph.D., associate professor of nursing at the UI, said. "Also, it's a good time for them to network with others around the state, to share their concerns, and to get support from one another in their school nursing role."