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Downstate Times

The Newsletter for SUNY Downstate
University Hospital of Brooklyn

Downstate's International Nursing Affiliation Program

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Pictured (l. to r.): International Nursing Affiliation Coordinator Tao Liu, MSN, RN; Lili Duan, RN; Hongdi Du, RN; Chief Nursing Officer Margaret Jackson, MA, RN; and Xia Zhao, RN

Tao Liu, RN MSN, CLC, assistant director of nursing, Department of Nursing Education, Professional Practice, and Research, recently welcomed three registered nurses from Beijing, China, who will be living on campus for three months to observe how we provide nursing care here. As coordinator for UHB's International Nursing Affiliation Program, Ms. Liu has hosted five contingents of Chinese nurses since the program began in 2011.

"Our visitors from China are not licensed to practice here, but they can learn a great deal by shadowing our nurses as they make their daily rounds," says Ms. Liu. "Nursing intervention and documentation requirements in China are very different than in the United States," she explains. "In China, hospitals do not generally have nursing assistants, unit clerks, social workers, nutritionists, and rehabilitation therapists on staff, as we do here. There, nurses handle such roles."

On April 11, Ms. Liu welcomed a second group of foreign observers from Holland. These observers, who all have advanced nursing degrees, were most interested in hearing about the level of autonomy and collaboration that exists between nurses and physicians in various specialty areas here, and about future trends in advanced nursing practice.

The International Nursing Affiliation Program offers experiences that equally benefit foreign observers and our nurses. "It's a terrific opportunity to share ideas, promote cross-cultural understanding, and gain a broader perspective on global healthcare needs," says Ms. Liu. "It's a win-win for everyone involved."


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Downstate nursing leaders Dianne Forbes Woods, Nellie Bailey, and Tao Liu (center) welcomed a large contingent of Dutch observers in April.