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Undergraduate nursing students create mental health app, receive inaugural Student e-Health Leadership Award

Award recognizes leadership in adoption and use of information and communications technologies among undergraduate nursing students

April 30, 2013 (Toronto, ON) – The Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (CASN) and Canada Health Infoway (Infoway) have announced the inaugural recipients of the $1,000 Student e-Health Leadership Award.

Amanda Li and Scott Wight from Trent University were recognized for the creation of the Trent Mental Health Initiative, a mobile application offering private self-screening, information about mental health issues, and local resources and support services for students. The application was built in response to the increased risk of depressive disorders amongst post-secondary students and the stigma associated with mental health disorders within the larger community. 

“Learning about the effective use of technology is crucial to ensuring the next generation of nurses is equipped to provide the best possible care for patients,” said Dr. Cynthia Baker, Executive Director, Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing. “We are pleased to recognize the creators of the Trent Mental Health Initiative for their innovative use of technology to address an important need in their community.”

The Student e-Health Award was created to recognize excellence in the adoption and use of information and communications technologies (ICTs) and highlight the role of ICTs in the delivery of evidence-based, patient-centered care. It is part of the CASN/Infoway Nurses in Training initiative, which aims to prepare nursing students to enter the workplace able to practice effectively in the increasingly electronic world of health care, improving care delivery and patient outcomes. The award recipients were announced at the recent 2013 Canadian Nursing Student Association (CNSA) Conference.

“Canadian nursing students are learning from the beginning of their baccalaureate education to embrace change and advancement in technology to best serve our practice,” said Lise Schultz, Vice President of the Canadian Nursing Student Association. “This year we were thrilled to present the CASN/ Infoway joint award recognizing the technological skill set that the next generation of nurses are bringing to Canadian health care.”

“The Nurses in Training initiative helps ensure nursing graduates are trained to work in modern, technology-enabled clinical environments,” said Richard Alvarez, President and CEO, Canada Health Infoway.  “These award recipients highlight the importance student nurses are placing on the role of technology as a means to enhance clinical value, and we look forward to seeing how they will leverage what they’re learning to improve the patient experience.”

The student award winners join June Kaminski, Program and Curriculum Coordinator at Kwantlen Polytechnic University, who received the 2012 CASN/Infoway Nursing Faculty e-Health Award for her exceptional leadership and commitment to e-Health in nursing education. Kaminski has successfully integrated nursing informatics in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)  program, and is currently developing a post-graduate program to be delivered in a hybrid classroom-online format.

About Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing / Association canadienne des écoles de sciences infirmières
The Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing / Association canadienne des écoles de sciences infirmières (CASN/ACESI) is the national voice for nursing education, research, and scholarship and represents baccalaureate and graduate nursing programs in Canada.

About Canada Health Infoway
Canada Health Infoway is an independent, not-for-profit organization funded by the federal government. Infoway jointly invests with every province and territory to accelerate the development and adoption of information and communications technology projects in Canada. Fully respecting patient confidentiality, these secure systems will provide clinicians and patients with the information they need to better support safe care decisions and manage their own health. Accessing this vital information quickly will help foster a more modern and sustainable health care system for all Canadians.

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For more information:

Siobhan Bond
Manager, Communications and Data / Gestionnaire, communications et des données
Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing
99 Fifth Ave, Suite 15
Ottawa Ontario K1S 5K4
Tel: 613-235-3150 ext.23
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Karen Schmidt
Director, Corporate Communications
Canada Health Infoway
Tel: (416) 595-3167
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