Lisa Merry

Dorothy Kergin Award

Dorothy Kergin Award

The CNF award that I received gave me the extra funding I needed to allow me to continue to advance in my nursing PhD studies. I am in the last stretch of data collection for my study which aims to uncover factors that are associated with emergency caesarean birth in migrant women (i.e., women born outside of Canada). In doing this work I hope to discover how conditions and services might be improved in order to reduce the caesarean rate for this group. Caesareans are an overused obstetrical intervention and have medical risks and recovery from this type of delivery is more difficult than from a vaginal birth. Migrant women, particularly those most recently arrived to Canada and those from developing countries, already face a number of hardships resettling in a new country, and adjusting to a new baby is challenging enough without the added strain of recovering from a major operation.

In the long term I intend to pursue a career in research and teaching. I envision working either in a university, research institute and/or hospital as a nurse scientist or professor. There are very few PhD prepared nurses and researchers, particularly in the area of immigration/global health and this is a growing area of interest given the high rates of immigration and cultural diversity of Canada. I am specifically interested in studying ways to better support and optimize care in the Canadian healthcare system to meet the needs of migrant women.