Susan Dahinten and Freida Chavez

UBC Nursing Professor Discusses Capacity Building in Punjab, India

17 September 2013

(Dr. Susan Dahinten and Director, Global Affairs Freida Chavez)

A venerable force in managing international engagements in Punjab, India, Dr. Susan Dahinten, from the University of British Columbia (UBC) School of Nursing, stopped by Bloomberg Nursing to discuss her work with faculty, students and staff.  Sharing her 11 years of experience of supporting nursing education, practice and research in Punjab, Dahinten showcased the positive impact her active partnerships have had on nursing in that region.

“Nursing in Punjab used to be considered low status,” says Dahinten. “In 1998 there were only three baccalaureate programs in the Punjab state but there are now over 100, and through our partnerships and the local commitment to providing higher-level education, the status of nursing has increased significantly.”

Along with the success of strengthening nursing education, Dahinten’s research work on child development and re-emerging interest in nursing leadership, led to a new role.  The India-Canada Centre for Innovative Multidisciplinary Partnerships to Accelerate Community Transformation and Sustainability (IC-IMPACTS) is a key collaboration between the University of Toronto, University of Alberta and UBC and 11 leading institutions in India.  Backed by federal government funding, the group focuses on three areas including: The Integrated Water Management research program (led by University of Alberta), the Public Health Disease Prevention and Treatment research program (led by University of Toronto) and the Sustainable and Safe Infrastructure research program (led by UBC).  Dahinten, lending her considerable knowledge of public health, works with U of T to meet the goals of optimizing the skill mix of health care workers, developing and evaluating nurse leadership, and finding innovative ways to support maternal-child health.

Dahinten’s presentation engaged all who attended and brought greater awareness of the work the three universities are undertaking to build capacity in Punjab.