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DEPARTMENTS: Editorial

Moving Forward Despite Uncertainty

Borger, Angela L.

Journal of the Dermatology Nurses’ Association: 3/4 2022 - Volume 14 - Issue 2 - p 61-62
doi: 10.1097/JDN.0000000000000677
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Welcome to another issue of the Journal of the Dermatology Nurses' Association (JDNA); we are glad you have decided to join us and spend time reading this current issue. I think you'll find a number of excellent articles in this issue. In addition to our recurring features of TeleDermatology and Photo Quiz, this issue has original research about hand eczema in hair stylist apprentices as well as a new contribution to our ongoing column about skin cancer. In this issue is an article reviewing anogenital squamous cell carcinoma. Be sure to read these well-written articles and make sure to let me know what you think of them.

Well-written articles about topics pertinent to dermatology nurses have always been the hallmark of what we aim to provide as content for readers. Each issue, my goal is to provide articles that offer information to dermatology nurses that makes your dermatology knowledge stronger and perhaps piques your interest in learning about topics that you may not encounter regularly in your particular clinical, educational, or research practice. I acknowledge that not every article will have the same impact for each reader; that is the reason we try to include a variety of articles throughout the year. Our intention is to provide articles about different topics, often in a variety of article-type formats, so that you can chose which articles best suit your educational needs. However, we continue to need your participation to make sure we are doing this. Are there article topics you'd like to see covered? Or, are there different types of article formats that would make your continuing education easier or more complete? The JDNA is the official journal of the Dermatology Nurses' Association, and I'd hope that we are hitting the mark in providing offerings that are meaningful to you professionally, academically, and personally.

To make sure we are appropriately addressing your learning objectives, we need your help. The JDNA relies on a large number of volunteers to help make each issue a success. I have talked about different roles JDNA volunteers play in past editorials, but as a reminder, the JDNA is always looking for motivated individuals to help as peer reviewers, authors, or Editorial Board members. One of our long-standing Editorial Board members, Sandra Oehlke, is stepping down to pursue other opportunities. She recently went back to school for a postmaster's program and is now an adult/geriatric nurse practitioner, which is a big change after her long career in pediatrics. About serving on the JDNA's Editorial board she says, “Being on the Board gives you the opportunity to make, based on your clinical practice, recommendations for articles that can be used in real life, day-to-day. Also, by being a board member you have the awesome opportunity to coordinate, collaborate, and make colleagues and friends across the country with like interests. Basically, you get to hang out with a bunch of people who love dermatology and to inspire others to share their knowledge by sharing articles.” Please join me in thanking Sandra for her contributions to the JDNA.

If you think you'd like to have a voice in determining what topics are featured in our issues, please consider volunteering your expertise. Historically, we have had a strong social media presence thanks to the ongoing efforts of our Digital Development Editor, Lisa Bonsall. Acknowledging that there are many of you with a real talent for social media, we'd love to have your contributions to help develop our online, digital content. Perhaps your expertise is in making instructional videos, or maybe you have an interest in doing short interviews with authors? Are you a dermatology nurse with an interest in doing podcasts about the articles in each issue? If so, we'd love to hear from you; please don't hesitate to reach out.

Social media does so well for many reasons, right? For most of the JDNA readers, social media is readily available and accessible, even at all times of day. I personally like that social media is something that I can passively consume or it can be something with which I actively engage—my choice, depending on topics, platforms, time of day, and energy levels. Social media can be vilified for a number of reasons, but I like to be optimistic and see this as format that connects those with common interests and connects communities of like-minded people. Maybe that's why I like the idea of having a social media presence for JDNA. It is exciting to think that those of us in nursing who love skin, love dermatology, and love dermatology patients can find a common ground for communication.

Finding common ground has been rather difficult recently, however. As I write this editorial, the COVID-19 pandemic concerns continue, with just yesterday the United States having the highest ever 1-day total. The pandemic has affected all of healthcare and nursing. I am sure you are seeing this in your practices, with both your patients and your colleagues and coworkers. As I think about articles about nursing in the last few months, words like “challenges,” “burnout,” “turnover,” “early retirement,” “mental-health concerns,” “moral distress,” “rationing of care,” “redeployment,” and “disaster” come to mind. I, for one, did not think I would see this in my nursing career. This is probably true for most of you as well.

So, how do we move forward, despite the pandemic still continuing? How do we plan for the future, while acknowledging we can't ignore what is still occurring and there is a degree of uncertainty? Rose Sherman (2021), in her blog Emerging Nurse Leader (https://www.emergingrnleader.com/looking-ahead-to-2022/), offers a set of key questions that are important to ask in this situation:

  1. What core beliefs have changed for us as a team that we need to look at differently moving forward?
  2. What losses have we experienced that we need to let go of to move forward?
  3. What have we learned about ourselves as leaders through this experience?
  4. What should our priorities be as we plan for a new beginning?
  5. What did we once believe to be true about the nursing workforce that may no longer be true, and how should we plan for the changes we see?
  6. If nurse tenure will only be 1–2 years on teams moving forward, how does that change the role of the leader?
  7. How can we help our staff reach a higher state of well-being in 2022?
  8. What can we do to accommodate more flexible scheduling and work rules?
  9. What might make sense to do in our environment to redesign care delivery?
  10. How can we support one another so our leadership team emerges from this experience with optimism about the future?

Although some of these questions are designed for nurse leaders and management, it might be appropriate for all of us at least to consider some of the questions and think about how the answers will affect us both personally and professionally. I am very fond of all you in dermatology nursing, and dermatology nurses have been and continue to be my mentors, my colleagues, and my friends. You are all very important to me, and I hope you are doing as well as could be expected. Although the concept of resilience has been complicated in the context of healthcare recently, for one, I am making sure to pace myself, taking care to pay special attention to the concepts of rest and balance in my life. I encourage you to do the same if you find this helpful. Please don't hesitate to let me know if there is something I, or the JDNA, can do to help if you.

As always, looking forward to hearing from you,

Angela L. Borger

Editor-in-Chief

[email protected]

REFERENCE

Sherman R. (2021, December 13). Looking ahead to 2022. Emerging Nurse Leader. https://www.emergingrnleader.com/looking-ahead-to-2022/
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