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LU’s nursing chair a Faith Community Nursing presenter

The Chair of the JoAnne Gay Dishman School of Nursing Dr. Cynthia Stinson will present on the topic of early onset Alzheimer’s Disease, a subject that she knows about professionally and personally.

Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas will host a Faith Community National Teleconference, June 26 from 1-2:15 p.m., title, “Not My Grand-Paw’s Alzheimer’s: Early Onset Alzheimer’s disease.” The cost to participate is $10, and nurses will earn one hour of nursing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.

From a professional perspective, Stinson will address early onset Alzheimer’s disease risk factors, symptoms, etiology and treatment for individuals and families experiencing early Alzheimer’s disease.

Stinson will also share her knowledge about the disease from her personal experience. Her mother was 45 when she was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s and lived until she was 65.

“Caring for a young person who has the disease is very different than managing the disease in an elderly patient,” said Stinson. “All treatments and services, like respite care, are tailored for the elderly. Alzheimer’s is extremely hard on all caregivers but early onset Alzheimer’s is particularly more difficult, and nurses need to know how to provide guidance, support and therapeutic counseling to patients and caregivers.”

Lamar University’s JoAnne Gay Dishman School of Nursing has a long-term partnership with Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas to provide ongoing continuing education.

Rebekah Seymour, teaches pediatrics and labor and delivery as well as nursing theories at LU’s School of Nursing, but she is also the Faith Community Nurse coordinator and educator for Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas. Faith Community Nursing was started in 2003 as a volunteer nursing program to provide free healthcare to faith workers in the community. The program expanded in 2011 when presenters were offered to provide continuing education credit to the volunteer nurses.  

“We provide topics that nurses request and that are beneficial for registered nurses to know in their faith communities,” said Seymour. “We’re trying to help congregants make better decisions before they get in the operating room.”  

There are 140 Faith Community Nursing nurses who go out into the faith communities and educate people, conduct blood pressure screenings and work with clergy who have high stress.

“We work with many pastors about making better lifestyle choices,” said Seymour. “Some of them have outrageously high blood pressure, and I know our program has saved lives and continues to save lives.”

For more about this program and future events, contact Becky Seymour in the Chaplaincy Department at Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas by phone at 409-212-5648 or 409-212-5890 or by email Rebekah.Seymour@bhset.net.