BE CREATIVE “THROW NOODLES AT THE WALLS” This is my philosophy for innovation!! Our innovation was and continued to be empowered by the need to change health care delivery and partner with the community.
KaSheta Jackson, DNP, RN
What was the impetus for your work or innovation?
- My lifelong desire to serve others has always stirred me in the direction of seeking service-oriented careers like firefighting and teaching. It wasn’t until I had the honor of helping care for my grandmothers during their battles against Alzheimer’s and other chronic diseases that I knew my purpose in life was to serve in the medical profession. BE CREATIVE “THROW NOODLES AT THE WALLS” This is my philosophy for innovation!! Our innovation was and continued to be empowered by the need to change health care delivery and partner with the community. Being focused on the problems and solutions is imperative to this work. We are addressing social, economic, equity, and population health, by aligning community and the health care system, — this is a win-win for all involved. Having support from the community leaders encouraged more innovation efforts to focus on more than just health care. The community provides the “fuel” by the numerous thank yous and how can I get involved mindset. I live by the Golden Rule and am rooted in the belief that, to “whom much is given, much is required”. This motto has been instrumental in my daily interactions with my peers and the community. I take pride in my humble beginnings and value every lesson I have learned during my personal and professional journey.
What problem are you addressing?
- Our innovation is addressing barriers and building relationships. This important work started as a means to provide basic education and vaccinations in communities with low trust and hesitancy during the COVID-19 pandemic. We emphasized “unity” in the naming for events due to the goal of strengthening partnerships and reducing historical anxieties. The creation of healthier communities through increasing access to health care, providing jobs, removing barriers, and addressing social, economic, and environmental factors is the main problem we are addressing. The impact our innovation had on outcomes, safety, quality, experience of patients and staff were redefining relationships with formal and informal community leaders, reestablishing our stance as community partners, listening to concerns, and instilling pride in care team.
How is this work innovative and necessary for the nursing profession?
- NURSES are assessing and leading this innovation. We see the need from the “bedside to the curbside”, and understand the many barriers our patients experience in this changing culture such as mental illness, fiscal strain, limited resources to vital daily items. As a nurse, we are taught to assess and respond and that’s exactly what we are trying to do with this innovation. We are in the process of creating a one stop community center. By aligning community and the health care system, we are addressing social, economic, equity, and population health—which will be a win-win for all involved.
What advice did you receive that really helped you? What advice do you have to offer?
- Lost opportunities, successes, redirections, and rejections have been instrumental in refining and defining my personal and professional journey. My life’s vicissitudes have helped mold me into the person I am today, and I am incredibly thankful. The best advice I received that really helped me—“be vulnerable, be present, be real, be involved and be quiet”. You have to be involved in the community in which you work, live and worship but also be willing to listen/learn from those who are experiencing things differently. Be willing to look through the lens of someone else to understand their hesitancy and trust concerns. Another lessons I learned is to be transparent, honest, and confident.
- This is a sure way to gain trust and be invited into the “circle”. The best advice I would give to anyone thinking about doing something that seems impossible is to “TRY”--dream bigger than their surroundings and to never forget the journey is not solo. I affirm this with my sons daily “You can do anything with a dream” but also “be willing to be uncomfortable with change…it’s HARD but worth it”.