Georgetown Nursing Chair Leads AACN, Johnson & Johnson Effort to Develop Documentary Teaching Toolkit

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November 9, 2021 – A new teaching toolkit focused on the documentary 5B seeks to inspire the next generation of nurses through engagement with concepts like leadership and moral courage.

Dr. Edilma Yearwood, chair of the Department of Professional Nursing Practice at the School of Nursing & Health Studies, led a committee to produce the toolkit, which is created by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing with funding from Johnson & Johnson.

Dr. Edilma Yearwood in an official portrait-style photograph.
Dr. Edilma Yearwood, chair of the Department of Professional Nursing Practice at the School of Nursing & Health Studies

“The documentary 5B conveys an inspirational story of everyday heroes, nurses, and caregivers who took extraordinary action to comfort, protect, and care for the patients in the first AIDS ward at San Francisco General Hospital in the early 1980s,” according to AACN. (5B is the name of the hospital unit.

‘Moral Agency and Courage’

Added the association, “This critical moment in health care history is conveyed through first-person accounts from nurses and health care professionals who, in the absence of any existing protocols, forged a new, innovative approach to patient care that was both medically sound and humane.”

Yearwood said she has found this work extremely meaningful and looks forward to continuing to develop the toolkit as the committee receives feedback from users, including faculty and students.

“We attempted to capture issues of innovation, caring, moral agency and courage, health equity, and leadership,” she said, noting that the group will also be adding material “on practice changes that resulted from the courageous actions of these nurses, physicians, and advocates.”  

‘Effective Teaching Tool’

“The teaching tools and learning activities highlighted in this toolkit are offered to assist in preparing students to more fully understand the many roles they will play as a professional nurse – leader, innovator, advocate, observer, and risk-taker, among others,” the association reported.

Goals include engaging with “foundational concepts on how to prepare nurses to exercise moral courage, moral agency, and innovation;” the importance of self-care; and acting with compassion, inventiveness, and leadership.

“The universal themes that resonate throughout 5B – leading with moral courage, advocating for patients, and providing compassionate, patient-centered care – make this film an effective teaching tool for nursing students early in their professional formation,” said Dr. Deborah Trautman, president and CEO of AACN.

By Bill Cessato