Sept. 5-7, nearly 1,000 nurse scientists, scholars and other nursing professionals from around the world gathered at the Loews Hotel in Miami Beach, Fla., for the XIII Pan American Nursing Research Colloquium, a three-day international nursing conference. This marked the first time the prestigious biennial global event was held in the U.S., according to a news release.
Themed “Global Nursing Research Challenges for the Millennium,” the conference featured panels, round-table discussions, poster sessions and workshops in English, Spanish and Portuguese. Topics of discussion included advancements in nursing science and ways to support research related to the United Nations Millennium Development Goals of combating hunger, poverty and other problems in the Americas and around the world.
“Can we solve all of these problems in three days?” Nilda Peragallo, RN, DrPH, FAAN, dean of the University of Miamis School of Nursing and Health Studies in Coral Gables, Fla., asked attendees at the opening ceremony, according to the release. “We have a thousand bright minds here. So I dont see why not.”
In addition to Peragallo, conference attendees were addressed at the colloquiums opening ceremony by UM President Donna E. Shalala, PhD, and John Ruffin, PhD, director of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities. “I do not believe that we can reduce healthcare disparities any place in the world without nursing playing a central role in that redesign,” said Shalala, who two years ago led the Institute of Medicine Committee on the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Initiative on the Future of Nursing and was the HHS secretary during the Clinton administration. “We must not restrain nursing leadership. They must be able to practice to the full extent of their education and training.”
Ruffin shared opening remarks on societal challenges. “The social determinants of health deal with issues that some of us would like to turn our heads away from — racism, discrimination, poverty and how socioeconomic status and neighborhood conditions impact our lives,” he said in the release. “As nurses, the people who are on the front lines delivering healthcare, you cannot afford to ignore these issues.” •