The Johns Hopkins School of Nursing (JHSON) has the honor of hosting a Collaborating Center (CC) for the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and World Health Organization (WHO). The CC engages in national and international activities that respond to information on evidence-based practice, new developments, policy, education, and communication in the field of nursing and midwifery. The JHSON CC engages in a variety of activities, with the majority of communication facilitated through websites managed by the Global Alliance for Nursing and Midwifery (GANM). The GANM is a knowledge gateway and online community of more than 3900 professionals from all over the world. The primary communication is via email because it allows for equitable access to the discussions regardless of internet bandwidth. Knowledge is shared through email via the discussion board, while developing stories and innovative practices are distributed using blog posts and webinars from global health experts.
In order to improve the GANM and better serve our online community, we sent an electronic survey to all of our members July 22nd, 2015. The survey was sent via email to all users in languages including English, Portuguese, Spanish, and French. The survey was open until September 11th, 2015. A total of 191 GANM members completed the survey. An overwhelming majority work at universities and hospitals or clinics. Sixty nine percent of respondents are currently nurses and 50% work in education. Thirty two percent currently reside in North America and 26% in South America, Central America and the Caribbean collectively, with 15% form Southeast Asia. Eighty three percent of respondents prefer to speak English while the majority of our members who regularly participate in GANM discussion boards reside in regions outside of North America and prefer to speak Spanish, French, or Portuguese.
GANM offers a platform for experienced nurses around the world to share ideas and discuss growing topics of interest from varying regions of the world. The majority of our respondents have advanced degrees and have more than ten years of experience in their respective field. This experience and education contribute to the wealth of information we share to our online community. Forty respondents participate in discussion boards and/or the online library with 23 utilizing the blog website. Ninety people expressed interest in contributing to future blog posts, all with intriguing ideas for new topics of innovation, research, and education. When asked if he or she would participate in continuing education programs offered through the GANM, 121 respondents showed interest; and of those interested 67% would be willing to provide payment for a course. The topics included but are not limited to prenatal care, immunizations, health care service management, midwifery topics, quality assurance, HIV prevention, nurse education in midwifery, and gender sensitivity in reproductive health.
Moving forward into 2016, the GANM will add new topics and content to our series of blogs, webinars, library, and discussion boards using the feedback from this survey by enlisting new bloggers and using requested ideas while aligning content topics with goal number 3 from the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages. Some of the objectives cited to reach these goals include the following: By 2030, reduce the global maternal mortality ratio to less than 70 per 100,000 live births; end preventable deaths of newborns and children under 5 years of age, with all countries aiming to reduce neonatal mortality to at least as low as 12 per 1,000 live births and under-5 mortality to at least as low as 25 per 1,000 live births; and end the epidemics of AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and neglected tropical diseases and combat hepatitis, water-borne diseases and other communicable diseases (click here to read about the other objectives under Goal 3).
In order to continue to grow our global community of nurses and midwives, we will strive to enhance collaboration with other collaborating centers in the region in order to offer additional nurse educator content in an effort to align strategies, build knowledge, and deliver requests for continuing education to our users.
The feedback provided from our users is invaluable. We are excited to grow and improve with our global colleagues in pursuit of improving health outcomes around the world. The more we connect and share ideas, the more likely our dreams and goals can come to fruition. We are one world.
 United Nations. (2015). Goal 3. Sustainable development knowledge platform. Retrieved from https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/sdg3