On April 13th, 2018, one of PCRM’s very own nurses, Danielle Hebner, organized the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society’s (CFAS) First Annual Westcoast Fertility Nurses Education Day, which was held in Vancouver at the Chan Centre at BC Children’s Hospital.
Danielle, CFAS’s Nursing Special Interest Group (NSIG) Co-Chair, felt there was an educational need for nurses on the west coast to have an in-person learning session, particularly since most conferences have been historically held in the eastern province which can be difficult to attend.
Topics and speakers were:
- “Preimplantation Embryo Development – the First 6 days of our Lives” by Dr. Salah Abdelgadir (Olive Fertility Centre)
- “Comprehensive Chromosomal Screening” by Dr. Jon Havelock (Pacific Centre for Reproductive Medicine)
- “What has Law got to do with it? Legal Implications and Considerations for Assisted Human Reproduction” by barbara findlay Q.C., Monique Shebbeare LLB, Zara Suleman LLM
- “Recurrent Pregnancy Loss: Moving the Yardsticks Down the Field” by Dr. Carl Laskin (TRIO Fertility Centre)
We asked Danielle a few questions about this event to provide some insight as to why these fertility related meetings are so important to nurses working with fertility patients.
- Aside from most nursing education sessions being held out of province, what other reasons did you decide to organize a session here in Vancouver? To provide more information on common practices and trends in regards to infertility and in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment in general. Having education days such as this keep us up to date and current on changes and new information.
- How many nurses from Vancouver (and surrounding areas) attended? 22 nurses were in attendance. In total, we had 40 professionals, including nurses, counsellors, physicians, genetic counsellors and lawyers.
- How often do nursing education sessions occur? Will you arrange another one in Vancouver? This was the first session to be held from CFAS dedicated to nursing. I am not aware of any other sessions that have been held out west for nurses, this was the idea behind this day. Out east there are many more in terms of in-person events (2-3 per year) and quarterly webinars which I am in the process of also bringing out west for members at a time that works for west coast members (due to the time difference, it is often convenient for east coast time, but right in the middle of IVF procedures in our time zone).
- How do these education sessions help nurses when it comes to working alongside fertility patients? A big part of a fertility nurses role is being able to provide education and support to our patient population that is current and cutting edge. In order to “stay ahead of the curve,” these educational days allow us to do exactly this. Education days that are held in-person also provide Q&A sessions that all attendees can engage in and share their experiences. I cannot express how important it is to have ongoing education (such as this day) for nursing staff, these days really “pay it forward” for nurses, clinics and most importantly our patients.
- What topics were suggested for the next meeting? We haven’t done this yet, were are still sending out evaluations for this date to obtain peer feedback. I plan to use this feedback along with a survey this fall 2018 to plan for the 2019 educational day.
At PCRM we are committed to ensuring that our staff is up-to-date on all topics regarding fertility treatments. We congratulate Danielle for a successful, well-organized and informative education day!