News 2023: Dr. June Andrews Horowitz elected president of international family nursing organization

News 2023: Dr. June Andrews Horowitz elected president of international family nursing organization
Dr. June Andrews Horowitz elected president of international family nursing organization

Also honored with the Excellence in Family Nursing Award during annual conference that featured presentations by CNHS graduate students and faculty

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Dr. June Andrews Horowitz, professor and associate dean of the College of Nursing & Health Sciences (CNHS), has assumed the role of president of the International Family Nursing Association (IFNA), raising the profile of the college and linking CNHS faculty and students to an international network of family nursing professionals.

During the 16th annual IFNA Conference held in Dublin, Ireland, Horowitz also received the Excellence in Family Nursing Award, the organization's highest honor. The award is presented to a member who makes outstanding contributions to the development of family nursing practice, research, and/or education.

Horowitz was presented with her award at the conference's opening ceremony. "It was really humbling and exciting," she said. "I look forward to promoting IFNA's mission and goals to foster family nursing and health globally."

See Associate Dean June Horowitz discuss her role and goals as president of the International Family Nursing Association and how it will benefit the College of Nursing & Health Sciences.

Horowitz honored for extensive program of research and its national impact

An excerpt from the award presentation:

"In subsequent decades as a faculty member, Dr. Horowitz continued to foster family nursing through preparing the next generation of family nurses and conducting cutting-edge research related to aspects of family health. Her extensive program of research has consisted of both qualitative and quantitative studies including randomized controlled trials. Her research has also used mixed methods; for example, in a current study, she is conducting multiple focus groups and interviews to inform the development of an app for postpartum depression (PPD).

 "Dr. Horowitz's program of research over the last three decades has focused primarily on family mental health, specifically PPD and mother-infant interaction. Her findings revealed that nursing/clinician support can promote the quality of mother-infant interaction and decrease depressive symptoms in mothers with PPD. Her research and publications addressing PPD screening of thousands of women provided compelling evidence to support PPD screening as the standard of perinatal care in the United States, thus showing the national impact of her work."

 A widely published expert on perinatal family mental health, Horowitz is a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing, a board-certified clinical specialist in psychiatric-mental health nursing, and an executive board member of Mother-Baby Connections, a perinatal treatment program in Philadelphia. Horowitz has been involved with IFNA for over 10 years, has served on the board of directors for 4 years, and was co-chair of IFNA’s Research Committee from 2013-2016, and Conference Planning Committee for events in 2017, 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2023.

Horowitz joined CNHS in 2016 and oversees the college's master of science, doctor of nursing practice (DNP), PhD, and certificate of graduate study (CAGS) programs. She advises PhD students on their doctoral dissertations and DNP students on their scholarly projects.

Along with a team of colleagues at Thomas Jefferson University, Drexel University, and Benten Technologies, Horowitz was awarded a MassVentures Acorn grant to develop a mobile app that can facilitate treatment for post-partum depression and improve mother-infant interaction. "Momma Connect" is being designed as an accessible, convenient, and cost-effective mHealth app for clinicians and women with PPD and is expected to bridge a gap between PPD screening and the availability of customized perinatal mental health care.

International Family Nursing Association
Dr. June Andrews Horowitz was presented with the Excellence in Family Nursing Award by the International Family Nursing Association for her outstanding contributions to the field of family nursing.

Promoting family nursing

Horowitz's goals for IFNA are "to help nurture the next generation of nurses and families. It's important to me to look at families as well as the individual patient. The U.S. is very individual-focused. We need to look beyond individuals to the community level and community health issues. The COVID-19 pandemic forced us to think beyond the individual where everyone in the family is affected."

This year's conference was held on the Glasnevin Campus at Dublin City University. More than 300 family health nurses attended from 30 countries, including the United States, Canada, Japan, Europe, Denmark, the Netherlands, Africa, Saudi Arabia, South America, South Korea, China, Taiwan, and Australia.

The conference theme, "Global Innovations in Family Nursing: Advancing Family Health" was designed to address the strong interest of nurses in caregiver burden; the family dynamic, the role of the family, and how the family is affected when a patient is sick, Horowitz said.

"Looking at healthcare through an individual bubble never really works," she explained. "Our thinking needs to go beyond the individual through behaviors the person has in their relationships. Everyone in that relationship needs to cope with whatever dynamic that person (patient) is coping with. If one person in the family is hurting, everyone is hurting. It's so simple but it's not necessarily the lens through which we see the world."

Benefits for CNHS

Horowitz sees many benefits of her involvement in IFNA for CNHS faculty and students, namely involving faculty in an international community of nurses. Several CNHS faculty presented at the conference and Assistant Professor Miranda Tyo will serve on the nominating committee.

"The association with IFNA provides an international outreach for our work. It will enhance our graduate faculty and student development. It puts CNHS on the map among other nursing schools and countries and increases our visibility among top U.S. nursing schools," Horowitz said.

"There is an international group that will open networking opportunities for our students. Our affiliation also opens networking opportunities for our faculty to collaborate with nurses in other countries. Most faculty and students don’t have that kind of window," she added.

While the United States has a highly educated nursing workforce, Horowitz says we can learn from other parts of the world. "We don't always do a good job with preventative care. We've seen a decline in longevity. Our country provides expert acute care, yet our health outcomes lag behind those of many developed countries. For example, Scandinavia has some of the best health outcomes in the world. We can learn lessons from others.

"You don't always have the opportunity to dialogue with other countries. Maybe we're not always #1 or do things the best way. At a conference, you get to hear what others are doing. With cultural humility, we can appreciate that."

IFNA also facilitates research opportunities with a global perspective. "As nurses do more research, we can generate and disseminate knowledge. This brings more seats to the table for policymaking. The recognition of nursing education is increasing and playing a huge role in policy."

Horowitz joined the following CNHS faculty in presenting their research at the IFNA conference:

  • Assistant Professor Peeranuch LeSeure
  • Professor Mary McCurry
  • Assistant Professor Mary McDonough
  • Associate Professor Monika Schuler
  • Assistant Professor Mirinda Tyo
  • Associate Professor Jennifer Viveiros