Award Recipient

Kelly DeCoste

Nova Scotia Nurses Scholarship

I am incredibly grateful to have been selected as the recipient of the Canadian Nurses Foundation Nova Scotia Nurses Scholarship. I am a Nurse Educator at the St. Francis Xavier University Rankin School of Nursing and a Master of Nursing Student at Athabasca University.

Nurses provide care, but they are also caring, and having an opportunity to positively impact the lives of others is why I wanted to enter the profession of nursing. As a registered nurse, it is an absolute privilege to work collaboratively with individuals, families, and communities to support and empower others to achieve optimal levels of health and wellness. Working as a nurse in medical-surgical and perioperative settings provided me with an opportunity to support the physical and psychological needs of all clients, while also advocating for more equitable access to healthcare services.

My experiences as a nurse have highlighted the numerous challenges clients face because of inequities in access to healthcare services. As a nurse educator, I encourage future nurses to always consider the social determinants of health and to advocate for more equitable environments for individuals, families, and communities. Aware of this need, I have returned to graduate studies to conduct research on how access to healthcare services impacts maternal mental health in the perinatal period, with a focus on women who plan to breastfeed. I am hopeful that my research will promote more equitable access to healthcare services and improve the health and well-being of women, families, and communities across Nova Scotia. 

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