Graduate School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health

Past Events

GSNMH November Research Seminar

Date: 4 November 2015

Time: 12.00 pm

The Compassionate Hospital: worthy endeavour or clinical imperative?

Free lunchtime seminar presented by Professor Philip Larkin

The expectation that compassion underpins healthcare service delivery is absolute. It would be hard to argue against the ideals of compassion as an approach to person-centered user and carer engagement in healthcare, especially at times of key life transitions, notably between living and dying.

However internationally, examples of end-of-life care that are less than compassionate have been identified and led to changes in national policy. There is a call that healthcare professionals and nurses in particular have lost compassion in their caregiving, and that a reinstitution of compassion as the basis of their professional identity is needed for better quality care.

Drawing on examples from the UK and Ireland, this seminar will ask what has been learnt from professional discourse, academic literature and media reporting in this area and how this has informed the development of more responsive and compassion-orientated hospital services. Using palliative and end-of-life care exemplars across a number of hospital settings (emergency room, maternity, older person care), together with experiences from two initiatives (Hospice-Friendly-Hospitals [HfH] and The Compassionate Communities projects), the case for compassion as a clinical imperative will be made.

Venue: Seminar Room CS803, Level 8, Clinical Services Block, Wellington Hospital

To RSVP please email the School Administrator or feel free to drop by on the day

FHSS Postgraduate Students' breakfast

Date: 7 October 2015

Time: 8.30 am

Venue: Room 305, Murphy Building, Kelburn Campus

The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences Student and Academic Services Office warmly invites our postgraduate students to an end-of-year breakfast.

Join us for breakfast to catch up with staff and students from FHSS and recharge after the long winter months.

Please RSVP with 'Postgraduate Breakfast' in the subject line by Friday, 2 October to

Download the Postgraduate Students' Breakfast poster (PDF, 402KB).

End-of-year breakfast for Māori and Pasifika students

Date: 6 October 2015

Time: 8.30 am

Venue: SU229 (Memorial Theatre Foyer), Kelburn Campus

The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences Student and Academic Services Office warmly invites our Māori and Pasifika students to an end-of-year breakfast.

Join us for breakfast to:

  • get energised for study
  • grab information on exciting opportunities
  • talk to an Adviser about Trimester 3 and 2016
  • celebrate the last two weeks of lectures!

Please RSVP with 'Breakfast' in the subject line by Friday, 2 October to

Download the Māori and Pasifika Breakfast 2015 Poster (PDF, 885KB).

GSNMH July Research Seminar

Date: 22 July 2015

Time: 12.00 pm

Sierra Leone in a time of plague; Nursing in an Ebola Treatment Centre

Free lunchtime seminar presented by Dr Ryan McLane, Senior Advisor of the Communicable Diseases Team of the Ministry of Health 

Since December 2013 the largest known outbreak of Ebola has infected more than 26,000 in West Africa, killing at least 11,000 people. While not the greatest disease killer of the region, Ebola's dramatic presentation, horrific course, and perceived infectiousness vaulted it from a place on the long list of 'African diseases' generally ignored in wealthier areas into a highly prioritised global threat. The nature of the disease, and its penchant for infecting health care workers, required the development of extreme infection control measures. Yet the most effective care available in the African setting was time-intensive hands-on nursing interventions. 

Dr Ryan McLane will offer a brief summary of what is known about Ebola and its care in the African setting, and share images and experiences from his time as a nurse at the Hastings 2 Ebola Treatment Centre in Sierra Leone.

Venue: CS801, Level 8, Clinical Services Block, Wellington Hospital

To RSVP: Email the School Administrator, at  

GSNMH May Research Seminar

Date: 26 May 2015

Time: 12.00 pm

Discourse, power, knowledge: the formation of a 'natural' caesarean
Presented by Dr Jeanie Douchie

As an embodied practice childbirth occupies a space in which a plurality of (shifting) meanings are inscribed upon the birthing body. Meanings to emerge from professional and popular discourse have the potential to shape the experience of corporeal (im)perfection with the potential for ratifying the body as an objet d’art upon which idealised identities and embodied  performances may be enacted. The material effect is the allure of surgery in the absence of clinical indications. 

This presentation is adapted from Jeanie’s doctoral research that explored the discourses constructing women’s choice for caesarean section in the absence of clinical indications, revisits key tenets post-structuralism as informed by the theoretical ideas of French philosopher Michel Foucault to trace the conditions of possibility for caesarean to emerge in the current moment. The democratisation of choice has exposed how caesarean, as an optional extra, is brought into being by tactical means. Knowledge of the various ways in different discourses converge to constitute choice, opens up a range of possibilities for contemplating the discursive positioning of women through the competing discourses of childbirth. 

Venue: CS801, Level 8, Clinical Services Building, Wellington Hospital

To RSVP: Email the School Administrator,at  



GSNMH April Research Seminar

Date: 1 April 2015

Time: 12.30 pm

Those with the gold make the evidence: the pharmaceutical industry and clinical trials

Presented by Professor Joel Lexchin

Pharmaceutical companies fund the bulk of clinical research that is carried out on medications. Poor outcomes from these studies can have negative effects on sales of medicines. Research has shown that company funded research is much more likely to yield positive outcomes than research with any other sponsorship. 

The aim of this talk is to investigate the possible ways in which bias can be introduced into research outcomes by drawing on concrete examples from the published literature. Biases are introduced through a variety of measures including the choice of research topics and comparator agents, hiding data from regulators, publication biases, ghost writing, researchers’ conflict of interest, stopping trials for commercial reasons and the use of “seeding trials”. Economic theory predicts that firms will try to bias the evidence base wherever its benefits exceed its costs. The examples given here confirm what theory predicts. What will be needed to curb and ultimately stop the bias that we have seen is a paradigm change in the way that we treat the relationship between pharmaceutical companies and the conduct and reporting of clinical trials.

Date: Wednesday 1 April 2015

Time: 12:30 - 1:30pm

Where: Seminar room CS801, Level 8 Clinical Services Building, Wellington Hospital

To RSVP: Please contact Laura Burnet, School Administrator by Monday 30 March

GSNMH March Research Seminar

Date: 19 March 2015

Time: 12.30 pm

Research methods to foster adolescents' critical reflection of gender, health and advertising: A Canadian case study

Presented by: Dr Elizabeth Banister

We used a case study approach to explore how adolescents (ages 12-14) critically analyse, evaluate and create gendered health messages conveyed through the commercial media, how they develop these critical media health literacy skills, and how a youth developed video production project works as an innovative health promotion tool.
Students were taught how to use iMovie and Green Screen technology on iPads for creating 2 minute advertisements to market healthy extracurricular participation among peers.
Data was obtained through individual and focus group interviews and participant observation. Interview questions helped to generate participants’ critical thinking, and focus group discussions facilitated participants to make transparent implicit contradictions in their thinking about the media, gender and health.
Our findings suggest that participants recognised the relevance of gender and health in their own lives at the cognitive and affective levels, and that both girls and boys showed some understanding of how the opposite gender is stereotyped.

Dr Elizabeth Banister is a Professor in the School of Nursing at the University of Victoria, Canada. Her research interests include adolescent health and media literacy, health education, knowledge translation and qualitative research design.
She served as Advisory Board member for the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Institute of Gender and Health (IGH) for 6 years and as a Professorial Research Fellow at the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health at Victoria University. She is currently an Honorary Research Associate at Victoria University.

Time: 12:30 - 1:30pm

Date: Thursday 19 March 2015

Where: Seminar Room CS801, Level 8, Clinical Services Block, Wellington Regional Hospital

To RSVP: Please contact Laura Burnet, School Administrator

Midwifery Post-Conference Seminar

Date: 4 December 2014

Time: 8.00 am

Where: CS801 Seminar Room, Level 8 Clinical Services Building, Wellington Hospital, Riddiford Street, Newtown

Cost: $100. Morning and afternoon tea provided.

To register: Contact Laura Burnet, School Administrator. Registrations close Wed 1 October.


The Graduate School of Nursing, Midwifery & Health is again holding its Post-Conference Seminar this year and we are looking forward to another great learning and sharing experience. 

There will be a range of speakers from the Central Region who presented at the NZCOM conference in Hamilton this year and postgraduate students from the GSNMH.

Mark this date in your calendars as soon as possible and register today. 

GSNMH November Research Seminar: Obesity

Date: 12 November 2014

Time: 12.00 pm

'Misfits': Managing the care of extremely fat patients in intensive care 

Critically ill fat patients pose considerable healthcare delivery and resource utilisation challenges which are often exacerbated by the patients' critical condition and types of interventional therapies used in the intensive care environment (ICU). This work provides new and important insights into the practicalities of caring for extremely fat patients within the ICU setting, and how staff manage fat-stigma in clinical practice.


Caz Hales is a lecturer at the Graduate School of Nursing, Midwifery & Health (GSNMH). She has a background in intensive care and acute care nursing practice, education and is an emerging researcher. Her doctoral thesis on how healthcare professionals provide care to extremely fat patients in ICU informs this research seminar. Caz is currently the lead researcher in a study that is investigating the experiences of patients, admitted to a tertiary level hospital, who weigh more than 180 kgs.


Time: 12:00 - 12:45pm

Date: Wednesday 12th November 2014 

Where: Seminar Room CS802, Level 8, Clinical Services Block, Wellington Regional Hospital

To RSVP: Please contact Laura Burnet, School Administrator

GSNMH October Research Seminar: Dementia

Date: 29 October 2014

Time: 12.00 pm

Does computer gaming therapy contribute to improved quality of life and cognitive functioning for people with mild to moderate dementia? Results of a pilot study

There is evidence in the literature from a limited number of RCTs that some non-pharmacological approaches such as cognitive stimulation therapy and cognitive training have modest but significant benefits in terms of increasing quality of life (QoL) and slowing cognitive decline in people with dementia. Research suggests that more focus should be placed on new innovative modes of delivery of non-pharmacological interventions.
The purpose of this pilot study was to explore if a programme of exer-games, utilising computer gaming technology can deliver improvements in wellbeing, quality of life, and cognitive functioning in people diagnosed with mild to moderate dementia as an adjunct to existing activities and treatments, and as an alternative approach for delivering cognitive stimulation.

Jenny Drury-Ruddlesden is a PhD candidate at the Graduate School of Nursing, Midwifery & Health (GSNMH), Victoria University of Wellington. Jenny has over 30 years experience working as a nurse in the United Kingdom and New Zealand. Jenny has previously worked as a research associate for Dr Kay de Vries, GSNMH, focusing on care of people with dementia in the acute setting and at end of life.

Time:    12.00pm – 1.00pm
Where:  Seminar Room CS801, Level 8 (H), Clinical Services Block, Wellington Regional Hospital
To RSVP please contact: Laura Burnet, School Administrator

Lesley Page Midwifery Seminar

Date: 2 September 2014

Time: 4.00 pm



Seminar Presented by Professor Lesley Page

Where: Seminar Room CS801, Level 8, Clinical Services Block, Wellington Hospital

To RSVP: Email Laura Burnet, by Friday 29 August 2014 

Lesley Page is president of the Royal College of Midwives. She was the first professor of midwifery in the UK at Thames Valley University and Queen Charlotte’s Hospital. She is a renowned international academic, advocate and activist for midwives, mothers and babies with more than 32 years’ midwifery experience. Her accomplished career has encompassed clinical practice, management and leadership, academic and policy work. She has practised midwifery in the community, hospital and home birth settings and continues to practise in Oxfordshire.

Professor Lesley Page will talk from her broad experience as a midwifery leader spanning all aspects of midwifery practice, from 1:1 care of women to global leadership.  

Back to top ^


NZ College of Primary Health Care Nurses NZNO Conference 2015

Date: 31 July – 2 August 2015

Time: 11.00 am

Venue: Te Papa, Wellington

The Graduate School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health is a Bronze Sponsor for the upcoming NZ College of Primary Health Care Nurses NZNO Conference to be held at Te Papa on Friday 31 July to 2 August 2015. For further details and to register check out the conference website.

Dr Kathy Nelson, (acting) Head of School and Rebecca Zonneveld, Nurse Practitioner/ Clinical Practice Advisor to the GSNMH will be attending so be sure to say hello. Course information and 2016 dates will be made available, keep an eye out for them.

Back to top ^