The purpose of the blog site is for sharing my experiences by discussing basic information, practical solutions, and creative ideas for building online web-based education from behind a hospital firewall.

Several years ago I made the assumption that most healthcare workers I knew were able to use a computer. The reality was that a number of the “seasoned” nurses lacked basic computer skills, including the handling of a mouse. According to HRSA 2008 National Sample Survey of Registered Nurses the average age of the RN is 47 and 16.2% were between the ages of 50-52. According to the AACN (2010) the average age of faculty possessing Doctoral or Masters prepared degrees ranges between 50-59 years old. Many nurse educators in both staff development and the college setting have expressed to me a need to learn basic web-skills to develop online education. For this reason I will be blogging primarily about the basics and how I integrate technology in nursing staff development.

The title for the blog “Nursing Staff Development: Behind the Firewall” came to me after a conversation with my online nurse colleague, Rob Fraser, founder of Nursing Ideas asked, "What is it that you do behind a firewall and why can't that information be shared with students and nurses who could learn from your experiences?"  That question gave me pause to consider the reality that the only people who can see my work are the employees at my hospital. Firewalls are important in maintaining security especially in regard to patient and employee records. However sharing and receiving information that can enhance nursing practice through an invisible wall that’s meant to protect sensitive data presents certain challenges when attempting to build accessible online education.

I have been a nurse for more than 30 years. My nursing experience includes critical care, emergency department, medical surgical nursing, and high-tech home care. I am ANCC Board certified in Professional Nursing Development and have also specialized in nutrition support, IV therapy, central venous catheters, and online instructional design.
I have been a staff development instructor since 1993. I presently coordinate and develop online nursing educational endeavors for a tertiary care facility in New York. I spearheaded the development of the hospital’s comprehensive nursing education intranet website. I am responsible for maintaining the site in addition to our online journal club and my STTI chapter’s website.

I am the recipient of the National Nursing in Staff Development Excellence in Educational Technology Award and the co-winner of the 2009 STTI NurseFLIX Competition with Kelly Moed, MSN, RN-BC. See my LinkedIn Profile