Our neighbors to the north in Canada have a vibrant nursing education and practice culture that serves diverse populations in concentrated urban areas and large, sparsely populated rural areas. This past June, for the first time, Springer Publishing Company attended the Canadian Nurses Association meeting in Vancouver, showcasing our publications and engaging in discussion with attendees. Our feature title, Strengths Based Nursing Care: Health and Healing for Person and Family, by Dr. Laurie N. Gottlieb, in collaboration with Dr. Bruce Gottlieb, is Springer Publishing’s first BSN-level textbook directly engaging the Canadian market, although its contents are of universal value. The book elegantly distills decades of work in educating nursing students on the profession.
Based on a strength’s perspective, where nurses enhance patient strengths to facilitate healing, it avoids the medical model’s deficit perspective of treating patients for particular conditions and illnesses that they suffer and endure. Here, the patient is a person, and professional caring engages that person by recognizing and capitalizing on his or her strengths, whether they be personal, family-oriented, or professional. This model, originally developed at McGill University, holds exceptional promise for nurses as it also engages them fully as persons. The textbook is a testament to the wisdom of nursing, and its supporters include Dr. Patricia Benner and Dr. Judith Shamian (the past president of the Canadian Nurses Association), who have written Forewords for the book.
Clearly, Springer Publishing has a place in Canadian nursing and that was nowhere better proved than by the interest shown by meeting attendees in the variety of Springer Publishing titles displayed at the booth, from the current AJN Book of the Year Award winner, Sleep Disorders and Sleep Promotion in Nursing Practice, the first research-based book on the subject from the nursing perspective, to the recent Nurses in War: Voices from Iraq and Afghanistan, a gripping portrait of nurses serving in mobile surgical field hospitals, detainee care centers, medevac aircraft, base and city hospitals, and more. This book, the second in Springer Publishing’s “Voices” series, (the first, Nursing in the Storm, details the nursing experience in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina), provides a medium for nurses to speak for themselves when facing traumatic situations of historic significance.
Of course, several nursing themes arose at the meeting which parallel those in the U.S. Most important here was the need for Canada’s nurses to collaborate with other health professionals and system leaders in resolving education, practice, policy, and ethical issues and methods. Equally significant is their focus on primary care, chronic illness, and caring for First Nations (the various Aboriginal peoples in Canada) people’s health.