By: Anna Brown, NSRH’s Director of Education
At NSRH, we believe that nurses have the power to change the world. We have the power to shift how health and wellness is perceived and delivered in the US. NSRH is proud to contribute to educating nurses and nursing students in comprehensive sexual and reproductive health using a reproductive justice and health equity lens. In our work, we strive to practice what we preach across our programs, educational offerings, and even in our partnerships.
Nursing education is steeped with facts and statistics without context. By failing to acknowledge and critique the systematic, exclusionary practices within healthcare, nursing education continues to center the dominant, white, able-bodied, thin, cis person as the gold-standard of “health.” This harmful narrative within healthcare education fails to interrogate how generational and structural inequities contribute to the ongoing marginalization and disparities amongst BIPOC, immigrant, rural, poor, LGBTQIA+ and other communities. As an organization committed to disrupting the status quo of nursing education and health provision, NSRH has been working to ensure that we are not replicating flawed narratives in the education we create.
As nurse educators dedicated to building a system of health that places those most marginalized at the center of our work, it is important that we interrogate our own processes and practices and align them with frameworks that we encourage other nurses to use. In order to change systems we have to start by changing ourselves. That means spending the time and effort to understand concepts like health equity, social and political determinants of health and how these impact individual and population health and wellness.
In light of this, NSRH recently partnered with Dr. Kamryn Lee at Radically Inclusive Consulting Collective to create a guide for our education team that will ground our materials, events and resources in a health equity framework. By designing nursing education that starts from this point, we can change the conversations around health disparity in this country. This guide is a great tool in our continued efforts to cultivate systemic change, and we know that the work doesn’t end there. We share this tool today as a commitment to our members to be transparent in our ongoing efforts to better ourselves, better what we offer to you, and to ultimately better the care we provide to our communities. We hope that you take a look at this tool and bring it into your own practice, institutions and organizations as we collectively build a future of healthcare that centers equity. We look forward to continuing to center trust, transparency and equity in all that we do at NSRH.