Twenty years ago, nursing was easier. There were fewer medications and interventions and not as many diagnostic tests. Guidelines, journals and recommendations were scarce. As for textbooks, well, there certainly weren’t as many. Nursing was far less complicated, and it was easier to avoid making mistakes.
And then the world changed. Technology evolved, and the Internet showed up. Besides solving many of our problems, these changes created a new problem that nurses had never experienced before: Too much information. In fact, so much information that it has become impossible to keep up-to-date, learn everything we should know and provide consistent care on our own. The reason it’s impossible is that information is infinite, but our mental capacity is not.
Humans don’t learn well when we’re lectured to, and when we’re expected to absorb and memorize an overwhelming amount of information in a short period of time. We don’t learn as much when we try to read and watch something at the same time. And when information is complex, our brains can’t keep up.
Turns out, we learn better when we’re taught information over time, and when the time is right for us. And we learn far better when information is simplified, interesting and relevant to us.
So, we built NursEd. A different way to learn. A new way of thinking about the work we do. A movement to empower nurses to do meaningful work.
Our vision is to make nursing education a right, not a privilege, and transform how future and current nurses learn, what they learn and the work they do, to help make nursing better for nurses and health care better for the people we care for.
We believe that between us and the people we care for is an opportunity to use our power and our knowledge to make choices. In these choices lies our potential, our impact, our freedom and our purpose.
Before the Internet, information was hard to find, and textbooks, classes, lectures and conferences were important ways of getting scarce information to the masses. But often, these ways of teaching fail to consider how people learn and what nurses really need to work in today's world.
At NursEd we believe the best education is the kind that teaches people to see differenty, to do meaningful work, to solve real problems and make change happen. To be effective, education must be interesting, accessible, helpful and relevant to us. That’s precisely why we're challenging ourselves to overcome the obstacles getting in the way of your learning and the work you need and want to do. With our tools and resources, we hope to help future and current nurses make the best decisions for themselves and the people they serve - wherever they are.
Hello! I'm Gillian Elmes. I'm a primary health care nurse practitioner working in Ontario, Canada. I've worked in health care for decades - ever since I could file charts alphabetically (somewhere around age 8). I'm the writer of the NursEd blog, a serial entrepreneur and founder of NursEd.
In 2017, I launched NursEd to transform nursing education and the work of nursing, to help nurses do work that matters to them and make health care better for everyone. I believe that we need to be compassionate with ourselves in order to be compassionate with others, and I wholeheartedly believe that it's possible to do meaningful work in nursing and build careers we don't need to escape from.
Our job as nurses is to do the work that needs to get done - work that resonates with us and the people we hope to help. To settle and ignore what’s most important to us is to abandon the very thing that gives our life purpose and meaning.
Above all else, I trust that nurses can make a bigger impact in the world, but only if we collectively learn to overcome our obstacles and silence the voices that make so many of us question who we are and what we’re capable of. We struggle with burnout and solving today’s health challenges, and NursEd is taking responsibility to change that.
You can connect with me at gillian@nursEd.ca or follow me by subscribing to the NursEd blog, or by reading re-tweets of the blog on FaceBook, LinkedIn, Twitter or Medium. I'd love to hear from you!