Computer Based Health Professional Training
Jane Koziol-McLain, PhD, RN, Associate Professor AUT University (Project Leader)
Lynne Giddings, PhD, RGON, RM, Associate Professor AUT University
Helen Curreen, MA, Senior Lecturer AUT University
Maria Rameka, BSc, RGON, Principal Lecturer, AUT University
Denise Wilson, MA, RGON, Senior Lecturer, Massey University Wellington
In 2001 a Computer-Based Training (CBT) course for emergency nurses in United States of America was developed on screening for intimate partner violence. CBT is an excellent method of education, especially for learning a way of thinking. An analytic way of thinking is necessary for healthcare workers to successfully intervene in the area of intimate partner violence.
The overall goal of this innovative educational technology project was to provide an effective teaching resource that enable healthcare workers in Aotearoa New Zealand to screen and intervene in the case of intimate partner violence in order to prevent injuries, illness and
death. The new product directly addresses the knowledge and skills that are essential for healthcare workers in Aotearoa New Zealand to fulfil their role as partner violence victim advocates in a safe and confidential manner.
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The original product, available at www.ednurse.org, was developed specific to the United States setting. Eighty-five percent of current users would "definitely" recommend the programme to others. We adapted that product to the Aotearoa New Zealand context. Americo-centric information was removed and necessary adaptations included for example:
- Family violence research conducted in New Zealand
- Government priorities for family violence in New Zealand
- Nursing Council priorities for family violence in New Zealand
- Legal information about the New Zealand Domestic Violence Act
- What can be expected from police in New Zealand
- Maori women, children and whanau abuse experience and cultural safety
- Cultural experiences of abused New Zealand Pakeha, Pacifika, Asian and refugee women and children.
- Support systems that are in place in New Zealand for emergency nurses and abused women.
The needs of women who are abused by their partners are multiple and complex, including economic, legal, psychological and physical health needs. This complexity includes effects of violence exposure on children and whanau. Yet few health care providers have been adequately trained to identify abused women. More often than not telltale signs and symptoms go unperceived or dismissed and a woman is obliged to return to an unsafe home. This occurs not only because of misdiagnosed symptoms, but also because intimate partner violence is still largely viewed as a personal matter.
Society in general, as well as health care providers, largely regard intimate partner violence from a wholly subjective perspective and, if not properly trained, may even blame the women for her misfortune instead of realizing the complexity of her situation and offering help. Without education, healthcare workers are likely to provide medical treatment without ever recognizing the underlying dynamics of family violence. Working against effective training is the stress and time constraints induced by the fast paced healthcare environment and limited resources. To simplify the complexities of training healthcare workers, the electronic medium may be a cost efficient and effective means of providing intimate partner violence education.
This project, possible by an educational technology grant from the Auckland University of Technology was completed in 2004. The training programme is available on http://www.ednurse.org/certificationNZ/index.htm
Programme for emergency nurses on screening and intervening in the case of intimate partner violence: www.ednurse.org