General Information

Nurses Week 2014

by Candy on February 18, 2014 2 comments

artofnursing-largeHello, and heads-up, Nurses!

This coming Nurse’s Week, I’m speaking as part of an exciting new event called the Art of Nursing. It’s a four-day series bringing together 12 extraordinary nurse pioneers to share their thoughts on how we can bring back the art of nursing – that healing presence and patient-focused practice first envisioned by Florence Nightingale.

I know how passionate you are about the nursing profession, so I wanted to personally invite you to join us and explain how you can register.

How it Works

The Art of Nursing begins on Nurses’ Day, Tuesday, May 6th ( the day I will OPEN the fun!)  and runs through Friday, May 9th. Each day, 3-pre-recorded, video interviews with presenters like me, will be “unlocked” for you to watch, download and keep.These interviews will be filled with fresh insights on topics such as self-care and stress management for nurses, how to reignite the love for your career, and how to remain mindful and present amid the new technologies being introduced into our work.

The Faculty

  • The Art of Nursing is organized by Elizabeth Scala, herself a nurse educator, speaker, and author. She’s gathered together 12 fantastic and forward-thinking women to share their knowledge and expertise with you.
  • In addition to yours truly, interviewees include an awesome array of nurse entrepreneurs, international speakers, authors, etc. You can see the full list of faculty here (, but trust me when I say that you’re guaranteed to learn something invaluable from this group and never again will you get access to them all in one place!

What You Get

  • 12 Video interviews and their audio-only companions (all downloadable)
  • The Art of Nursing workbook – filled with additional tools and resources from our speakers
  • Access to both the Art of Nursing Facebook and Linkedin groups both of them made up ofnurses from around the globeYour Investment and How to Register
  • You can register for the Art of Nursing via the links below:
    • Student rate: $95.00.
    • Individual rate: $150.00
    • Organizational rate*: $3,500.00*Organizations include hospitals/wellness centers and nursing schools, associations, and organizations. The fee of $3,500 covers registration costs for all of your staff; however, your individual staff members will still need to “register” so they get the daily emails during the event.)If you have any questions or difficulty registering, you can email I’d love to have your presence during my presentation and hope you can join us.

I hope to hear from you all after DAY ONE, when I “channel” Florence Nightingale for this 21st century audience.

Thanks, in advance, for your enthusiastic participation!


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CandyNurses Week 2014

Regina’s Story

by Candy on June 13, 2013 No comments

Sunset Vancouver BC First in a series on interprofessional teamwork…

At the fourth international healthcare conference, entitled, “Collaborating Across Borders,” here in veritably verdant Vancouver,B.C., the plenary speaker was the widow, Regina Holliday. Ms. Holliday’s presentation centered around the miscommunication, misunderstanding, and mishandling of her husband’s illness within the US healthcare system. Her story and accompanying artwork made me think of the times I returned from work as a nurse clinician, and wished I could paint the fears, frustrations, and ugliness I saw exchanged between team members.

I was aware that a certain patient family was treated without due respect, which caused the patient to not be well served- in the most caring way, shall we say- and I did the best I could to ease their pain.  I felt guilty as hell that a family should feel so thankful to me for just doing my work with kindness. This didn’t happen a lot, but too often… Then, when a card or small gift was left for me from a thankful family,  EVEN in the case of their loved-one’s death, the muttered questions overheard of, “What did she do that was so special?” made me wince.  And to be warned that I should not solicit gifts? SOLICIT? It felt like a knife through my heart.

Perhaps because I stole the time to sit with an arm draped around a scared and grief-stricken mother?  They could not know that once I was a scared and grief- stricken parent. Once it was me who curled my face into a green hospital wall and wept, “How can the world keep spinning when my baby may die ? How can they laugh and talk outside her room as though there is no misery here?”

Hospitals are prisons of sorts.  And this  is how all POWs feel, from Auschwitz, to Siberia, to any children’s ward.

Once it was me who vowed to be there for the next grieving parent.

Click here for link to Regina’s blog.

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CandyRegina’s Story

Hub-Caps to H-CAHPS

by Candy on July 27, 2012 No comments

As surely as the white-walled hubcaps on my father’s shark-finned ’59 Buick, which I drove when I was 16, would have been replaced with wire-rims (were it still running), the CAHPS (Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and System) assessments have morphed into H(for hospital)CAHPS. (Say, “H-Caps.”)

What does this mean? And who cares?

You should, dear reader. The HCAHPS is the next generation, Ralph Nader-type of brainchild that healthcare consumers (i.e., all of us, eventually) conceived in the early 2000’s.  It all started as a back-lash movement against the atrocities reported in the original 1999 IOM report that outlined close to 100,000 hospital deaths due to system errors… per year!

If you follow public health policy news, you know we healthcare advocates have been arguing for the general populace, in places like Sacramento and D.C., in favor of just such an instrument, for years. We have labored through a prolonged, and complicated gestation, to see it grow into a real-live-tool, for about 3 years now. The results are helping shape the future of healthcare. So, when you have the opportunity to complete a “patient satisfaction” or other survey from your healthcare provider, DO SO!

Like the right to vote, it doesn’t help if you just complain.

Ya gotta say something to be heard.



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CandyHub-Caps to H-CAHPS

Mom’s Need to Nurture

by Candy on July 23, 2012 No comments

My daughter, who moved  home to finish a master’s degree in healthcare administration, will be taking off to Europe again today.

She has lived abroad before, so I know she knows how to navigate in a foreign country. She is also going to meet up with one of her best friends, and they will visit one of our previous exchange students, so I know she’ll be in good company. She’s brushing up on her german, so I know she won’t starve. 

Then why am I fretting? If she were married, or in her own place,  I wouldn’t be a part of the getting-ready process. Out of the loop, I’d be just waiting for the postcards.

But, no.

When a grown child lives with you, a parent has the opportunity to let go and hold-on simultaneously. This can be confusing for both parties.

Speaking of parties, it feels like that most of the time, with her around.  

The cat is eyeing her suitcase, suspiciously. He wants to jump in, and so do I. We will both howl when she leaves.

Seems like moms never outgrow their need to nurture.



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CandyMom’s Need to Nurture

So You Wanna Run Barefoot?

by Candy on July 19, 2012 No comments

     This really sounds like something you’d say to your toddler, with a wry smirk on your face.  Be the interlopers rocks, glass, or just the random asphalty-hardness, what child hasn’t learned, as the punsters say, the hard way?

     Then what sense can we make of the newest adult-fad, barefoot running? Despite the much-touted book on the subject, there exists no reliable scientific evidence to cushion the fall.  (Could it be a nefarious podiatrist’s plot to garner more customers??) Not surprisingly, sports’ medicine experts and cast-adorned would-be runners have “come out” against the practice, pointing to the painful (and expensive) fruits of their labor-of-love. Experts warn that running with shoes can lead to anatomical injuries, since folks often run “recklessly” with highly padded footwear.

     Whether it’s the Chocolate Diet, (and other  fantasies), texting while driving and /or walking, or barefoot running, let us not forget the words of P.T. Barnum, circus entrepreneur, who reminded, “There’s a sucker born every minute,” and “Opinions are like assholes- everyone’s got one.”

     For those 21st century running enthusiasts, who’d like to mimic their third world counterparts, here’s a healthful sports tip : Take it easy; know your limitations, or just say NO !

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CandySo You Wanna Run Barefoot?


by Candy on May 11, 2012 No comments

Hello, Readers!

‘Coming up for air after having finished a business plan for an interprofessional healthcare workshop for communication and team building, and I realized this is Nurses’ Week!

Considering that in an annual survey, nurses have earned the highest ranked public trust for the 11th straight year,what does that mean to you?

We  function as patient advocates and professional healthcare providers, both at the bedside and behind the scenes. Since I have the distinct privilege of playing a part in several healthcare areas, I’d like to take a moment to reflect on lessons learned, and to encourage those nurses out there, or would-be nurses, to keep up the good work!

My work on the university campus is such a blessing. What an invigorating assignment, to help shape the nurse of the future. We faculty shoulder the academic load with (mostly) grins, as we see the progress of neophyte nursing students. This is a double blessing ~ first, we see them grow; second, we know when we are old there will be competent professionals to assist us!

The work with the American Nurses Association (the professional organization, not a union) allows input into health policy on the state and national level. What an honor, and what fun! (Stay tuned, as I will post a podcast from the Washington, DC House of Delegates in June.)

So here’s a word of encouragement to all you healthcare students out there – nursing is a profession with great lateral mobility and opportunities for growth. Study, study, study. You’ll  soon be entering a rewarding profession.

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Gotta Crow!

by Candy on March 6, 2012 No comments

“7 Traps” article picked up by Reuters

    click here for Reuters article 


Hello healthcare leaders everywhere,

Attending the California Action Coalition (a group of  healthcare leaders) seminar today, the same day as the article about my healthcare speakers video series hits the press in > 2000 newspapers and media outlets! This is fortuitous and accidental timing, as the need for healthcare leaders to hone their critical speaking skills is never more paramount than now!

The California Action Coalition is the first inter professional state group (funded by Robert Wood Johnson Foundation). The coalition serves to plan interprofessional education to meet the goals of healthcare change which is mandated to happen in this country.  Four promising areas across education drive the move to position nurses into the fore of patient care, in order to adequately serve the country’s burgeoning population and healthcare needs.

Can I hear an amen?!


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CandyGotta Crow!

Connecting Worldwide

by Candy on February 7, 2012 1 comment

 Dear Friends,

Forty eight years ago today, The Beatles landed in New York (of course, they flew Pan Am).


If you are old enough to recall that occasion (and the mass hysteria that followed), where were you?

While watching them on the Ed Sullivan show, I recall being SO upset that no one could hear anything above the screaming fans! One thing’s for sure, though: They communicated a joyful, new sound to an international audience.


Yes, there was poverty, inequity, and political turmoil in many parts of the world then, as now. However, their music and optimism set the stage for people to unite. Not everyone chose to be a part of this “revolution.” but many of us did.

That’s not such a bad example, eh?


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CandyConnecting Worldwide

Dallas Delights

by Candy on February 6, 2012 No comments

Howdy all,

I am VERY pleased to report having spent last weekend in a Dallas hotel, just learning new things and having fun.

Hold on there, partner, don’t get the wrong idea!

Over 300 exhilarated participants from many corners of the world attended the National Speakers Association annual Winter Conference. The seminars were first-rate. Add to that, communing with old friends and new made this one of those “mountain-top” experiences. The only possible down-side was the up-side from such sumptuous food! The Marriott folks really spoiled us, and I have the extra pounds to prove it.

You have to admit: NSA  brings people with such divergent backgrounds together, all to discuss methods of increasing communication on a global scale. Personally, I am anxious to apply  some of the lessons learned in my work with healthcare teams.

I have this to say about that: WA-HOO!


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CandyDallas Delights

Rev Your Engines for the New Year!

by Candy on January 28, 2012 No comments


Hello Friends,

Well, I have already broken my New Year’s resolution to blog twice a week. (Let’s not even mention the one about working out every day. HA!)

One resolution I did manage, was to make available a NEW video series for healthcare leaders everywhere. You can access the intro by clicking on the TV screen to the right >>

See it?

One of my motivations for making the series was my frustration when I am an attendee at a conference. Anyone in the audience will tell you, conference speakers are notoriously BORING!  There is a lot of room for improvement, right?

So,  this  brief video series of tips n’ treasures are tools you  can use to help pinpoint your presentation problems. We call it,  “The 7 Traps Speakers Fall Into.” (You scholars, please pardon the dangling participle!).  

Yes, you can download the series right NOW. Listen as often as you like!  I hope you, or someone you know, will benefit by it.

Yours for more engaging healthcare conferences,


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CandyRev Your Engines for the New Year!