Award Recipient

Sarah Xiao

Sigma Theta Tau International Award

I am a PhD candidate at the Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing at the University of Toronto. My research interests are in nursing indicators and healthcare quality measurement in mental healthcare settings. These interests stem from various roles I have had in my professional nursing career in mental health care, best practice guideline development, and quality improvement initiatives.

My doctoral research involves developing an instrument to evaluate the quality of discharge planning processes in mental health care. In collaboration with nurse leaders at CAMH and Ontario Shores, I am gaining invaluable insight into how my research can be used to influence mental health policies and services. Measuring and evaluating the impact of nursing care on patient and organizational outcomes will enable healthcare organizations to deliver better, more effective patient care.

Like many other nurses, I went into the field of nursing because of my caring, nurturing personality and desire to help others. I began volunteering with children and seniors and working with the homeless at a very young age, and knew that a career in nursing would allow me to continue to make an impactful difference in society. To date, the extensive breadth of experiences I have uniquely gained in nursing have greatly contributed to my journey of self-discovery and professional development. These invaluable insights continue to inspire me on my nursing career path of life-long learning.

After completing my PhD, I plan to pursue a postdoctoral fellowship to achieve my career goal of becoming a nurse scientist. Building on my doctoral work, I will develop a research program to examine the linkages between discharge planning processes and patient outcomes in mental health care. Having family members afflicted with depression for three generations, I hope to become a mental health advocate and improve healthcare outcomes for marginalized populations in Canada and abroad.

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