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Nursing News HighlightsNurses Leading Innovation

J&J Spotlights Nurses’ Impact on Health at Aspen Ideas Festival

At this year’s Aspen Ideas: Health Festival, Johnson & Johnson sponsored two sessions that invited healthcare innovators and changemakers from around the world to share their stories of why and how they’re shaping a world where everyone can thrive.

This year at Aspen Ideas: Health, many of the world’s most innovative leaders converged in Aspen, Colorado to discuss solutions to today’s most pressing healthcare challenges. Johnson & Johnson was proud to underwrite the event and support these vital conversations, as well as host two sessions, “THRIVE: Stories of Health Heroes Heard around the World” and “The Modern Florence Nightingale: The Future of Nursing,” which invited healthcare changemakers to share their stories of why and how they’re shaping a world with better health outcomes.

The THRIVE session was held on the opening evening of the conference, and was hosted by Michael Sneed, Executive Vice President of Global Corporate Affairs and Chief Communication Officer at Johnson & Johnson and Peggy Clark, Vice President and Executive Director at Aspen Global Innovators Group. The session focused on the stories of the Global Scholars Johnson & Johnson hosted at the Festival, including Adrienne Crawford, a Certified Nurse Midwife at Community of Hope, and the awardees of the first-ever Johnson & Johnson Nurses Innovate QuickFire Challenge, Abby Hess, APRN, DNP, and Lauren Wright, Ph.D. student, MSN, AGNP-BC. They took the stage to share their stories of championing the underserved, empowering communities from the first to the last mile of care, and redefining what it means to be an entrepreneur.

Lauren and Abby spoke about the journeys that led them to ultimately win the recent Johnson & Johnson Nurses Innovate QuickFire Challenge. Lauren’s innovation, The Natural Nipple, is the first baby bottle nipple that improves maternal and child health outcomes by supporting prolonged breastfeeding without latching issues. Abby used her experience as a nurse in her hospital’s anesthesiology unit to invent a video game app that helps children relax and prepare for surgery by enabling the game to be controlled by the child breathing into an anesthesia mask. You can read more about their great ideas here.

Before a packed room at the THRIVE session, Lauren and Abby shared how transforming their great ideas into solutions helped them grow as nurse innovators and entrepreneurs. Lauren shared how her experience with a nurse’s empathetic care inspired her to make a difference in human health and seek out problems in healthcare. “Every day when I’m facing new barriers as an entrepreneur, what motivates me is that it’s not a ‘mom’ issue, it’s a humanity issue if we can’t support women to breastfeed,” said Lauren. Abby shared how leading her project as a nurse practitioner gave her great advantages. “Being a nurse, I was incredibly comfortable collaborating across different disciplines, and learning new skills and technologies is something we do constantly as nurses,” Abby said. Abby beamed as she shared that she is first nurse at her hospital to win their innovation grant.

The “Future of Nursing” session featured an interactive panel with Shawna Butler, nurse, economist, and “EntrepreNURSE in Residence” at the Radboud University Medical Center. Shawna was joined by fellow healthcare innovation advocates, Raphaela O'Day, Senior Performance Coach and Innovation Catalyst at Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute, Ruth Katz, Vice President and Executive Director of the Health, Medicine, and Society Program at the Aspen Institute, Dean Antonia M. Villarruel, University Of Pennsylvania School of Nursing and Sharon Brownie, PHD, RN of Oxford-Brookes University.

The discussion focused on recognizing the contribution of nurses to our healthcare system, health innovation, and highlighting the importance of investing in our global nursing workforce.

Johnson & Johnson was proud to be on the ground at Aspen Ideas: Health, leading the global conversation on why nurses, midwives and other healthcare workers are a critical facet in transforming worldwide health through their innovative solutions that address today’s pressing healthcare challenges.

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