Tag Archives: editor-in-chief

Editor-in-Chief’s Message | September 2019

beth kelsey editor chief

Dear Colleagues,

In July 2019, the NPWH Board of Directors approved a position statement entitled Eliminating Preventable Maternal Deaths. Readers can find the position statement in this issue of the journal. Within this position statement, NPWH makes a commitment to provide members with continuing education (CE) programs and evidence-based resources regarding causes, contributing factors, and strategies to eliminate preventable pregnancy-related deaths.

This year’s 22nd Annual NPWH Premier Women’s Healthcare Conference provides numerous sessions in various formats that inform NPs about how we can lead in the elimination of preventable pregnancy-related deaths. The preconference day includes a 4-hour panel format presentation, Maternal Mortality: Beyond the Hospital Walls, that focuses on quality improvement (QI) efforts and how to implement relevant Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health safety bundles in clinical settings. A breakout session, The Heart of the Matter: What Every Obstetrical Provider Must Know About Pregnancy-Related Hypertensive Disorders and Peripartum Cardiomyopathy in 2020, provides important information on these two leading causes of preventable pregnancy-related death. To address growing evidence that mental health disorders and substance abuse are major contributors to maternal mortality—most apparent in the first year postpartum—the conference includes a breakout session, Maternal Mental Health: A Comprehensive Pathway, and a 4-hour American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) Treatment of Opioid Use Disorders Course. The ASAM course, combined with 4 hours of online content, meets the required education to obtain a waiver to prescribe medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder. I strongly recommend attending at least one of these sessions.

The journal itself is an excellent avenue for CE and for sharing of evidence-based resources. To that purpose, I am putting out a special call for submission of journal manuscripts on topics related to:
• risk factors that can be identified prior to a pregnancy and mitigated by care individualized to each woman’s needs (See Box 3 of the position statement);
• leading causes of maternal mortality during the pregnancy-through-postpartum continuum (See Box 1 of the position statement);
• strategies for action to address contributing factors for
• pregnancy-related deaths at community, health facility, patient/family, and/or provider levels (See the Table in the position statement);
• racial/ethnic disparities in maternal mortality; and
• addressing implicit bias at provider, health facility, and health system levels.

If you wish to respond to this call for manuscripts, you can access our Guidelines for Authors hereA. If you wish to discuss a potential manuscript topic, please contact me at bkelsey@npwomenshealthcare.com.

Nurse practitioners who provide healthcare for women before, during, and in between pregnancies must heed the call to lead or be part of the collaborative effort needed to make a difference. As you read the position statement, I hope you take to heart and implement at least some of the recommendations. I hope that you get involved in planning and implementing evidence-based maternal mortality prevention strategies not just at provider and patient levels but also at community and health facility levels. You can lead and/or participate in research and QI projects addressing preventable maternal mortality. You can educate your state and federal legislators so they understand and embrace the imperatives to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in pregnancy-related mortality and to ensure access to quality care for all reproductive-aged women.

In a country as rich in resources as the United States, the maternal mortality rate should not be higher than that in other countries with similar resources. But it is. If three in five pregnancy-related deaths in the U.S. are preventable, then they should be prevented.1 Please join with NPWH in our commitment to make a difference.





1. Petersen EE, Davis NL, Goodman D, et al. Vital signs: pregnancy-related deaths, United States, 2011-2015, and strategies for prevention, 13 States, 2013-2017. MMWR. 2019;68(18):423-429. cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/68/wr/mm6818e1.htm

Web resource

A. npwomenshealthcare.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/WH-Guidelines-for-Authors-04-8-19.pdf

Editor-in-chief’s message

beth kelsey editor chiefDear Colleagues,

June is Men’s Health Awareness Month. Whether or not you provide direct care for men, you can play an important role in one aspect of men’s health: working to eliminate HPV-associated cancers. According to the CDC, about 15,800 men in the United States are diagnosed each year with HPV-associated cancers.1 Eighty percent of these men are found to have oropharyngeal cancer (base of tongue, tonsils, pharynx) and 20% are found to have penile, rectal, or anal cancer.

These cancers typically develop slowly over several years or even decades after HPV infection occurs. According to the CDC, with respect to HPV-associated cancers in men, the median age at diagnosis was 61 years for oropharyngeal cancer, 69 years for penile cancer, and 59 years for anal cancer.2 Most men with recently diagnosed HPV-associated cancers did not have the HPV vaccine (approved for use in males in 2009) available to them to prevent infection when they first became sexually active as adolescents or young adults.

Today we have an HPV vaccine approved for males and females that prevents infection by all seven of the high-risk HPV types associated with cancer, as well as the two low-risk types of HPV responsible for genital warts. Although HPV vaccination rates are improving, those in males continue to lag behind those in females: According to 2017 CDC data, 53.1% of girls aged 13-17 were up to date with the recommended HPV vaccination series, as compared with 44.3% of boys aged 13-17.3

Current recommendations for males include routine vaccination at age 11 or 12.4 Catch-up vaccination is recommended for males aged 13-21 who have not completed the vaccine series. In addition, vaccination is recommended through age 26 for males not adequately vaccinated previously who fall into any of these categories: men who have sex with men, individuals who are transgender, and individuals who have certain immunocompromising conditions.

A call for action: If you see adolescent and/or young adult males in your practice, ask them if they have completed the HPV vaccination series. If not, and when indicated, urge them to get vaccinated at that time. Because young males are not as likely as young females to seek regular reproductive/sexual healthcare, we must advocate for HPV vaccination for both males and females at every opportunity. When providing the vaccine to females, let them know why young males should get vaccinated too. When performing cervical cancer screening or discussing cervical cancer screening recommendations with female patients, let them know that the HPV vaccine that prevents cervical cancer also prevents several types of cancer in males. Offer your patients written information such as the CDC’s HPV and Men – Fact Sheet. With a concerted effort to get all preteen, adolescent, and young adult males HPV vaccinated, when these individuals reach age 40 and beyond, the cancer statistics for men should look much different than they do today.





Beth Kelsey, EdD, APRN, WHNP-BC, FAANP


1. Viens LJ, Henley SJ, Watson M, et al. Human papillo-mavirus-associated cancers – United States, 2008-2012. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2016;65(26):661-666.

2. CDC. HPV and Cancer. HPV-Associated Cancer Diagnosis by Age. Page last reviewed August 16, 2018. cdc.gov/cancer/hpv/statistics/age.htm

3. Walker TY, Elam-Evans LD, Yankey D, et al. National, regional, state, and selected local area vaccination coverage among adolescents ages 13-17 years – United States, 2017. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2018;67(33):909-917.

4. CDC. Vaccines and Preventable Diseases. HPV Vaccination Recommendations. Page last reviewed December 28, 2016. cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd/hpv/hcp/recommendations.html

Editor-in-chief’s message

Dear Colleagues,

I hope the start of 2019 has been a good one for everyone. We have much to anticipate in the coming year with the journal and NPWH. For now, though, I want to take a look back at 2018, recognize the many individuals who helped us have an excellent year, and celebrate all we have accomplished for the journal.

I’ll start by thanking all the authors of articles published in the 2018 issues of the journal. They brought us high-quality, interesting, and clinically useful information for our everyday practice. The wide variety of content provides something for every reader. As special recognition, we asked readers to choose their Women’s Healthcare 2018 Favorite Articles. Congratulations to these winners:

Feature Articles

First place: The ABCDs of bacterial vaginosis: Abnormal flora, Bothersome symptoms, Chronicity, and the Differential diagnosis, by Alisa Pascale, DNP, WHNP-BC (December 2018)

Second place (tie):
Dense breasts: Cancer risk and supplemental imaging modalities, by Mary Ellen Egger, APN, WHNP, CBPN and Diana L. Lam, MD (March 2018)

Caring for women with disabilities during the perinatal period, by Lorraine Byrnes, PhD, FNP-BC, PMHNP-BC, CNM, FAANP; Mary Hickey, EdD, WHNP-BC, FNP; Jin Young Seo, PhD, WHNP-BC; and Lorie Goshin, PhD, RN (December 2018)

Department Articles

First Place: Policy & practice points: Cultivating your inner Wonder Woman: Policy advocacy, by Diana M. Drake, DNP, MSN, APRN, WHNP-BC (March 2018)

Second Place: Commentary: WHNPs in specialty programs: My experience in breast surgical oncology, by Caitlyn E. Hull, MS, APRN-CNP, WHNP-BC and Randee L. Masciola, DNP, APRN-CNP, WHNP-BC (September 2018)

I also extend a special thank-you to all the individuals who peer-reviewed manuscripts for us in 2018: 

We rely on their thoughtful and expert feedback to ensure that the articles we publish are the very best.

Our editorial advisory board (EAB) members continue to provide guidance on potential topics and format for the journal. They do this by reviewing feedback from readers on what they want to know more about, staying abreast of contemporary issues, and participating in a yearly meeting. Some of our EAB members also contribute by peer-reviewing manuscripts and submitting manuscripts of their own. I am pleased to welcome Lorraine Byrnes as our newest member of the board.

The HealthCom Media publishing team is outstanding. They bring together diverse talents that keep us moving forward and looking our best. Their commitment to publishing a journal we can be proud of is apparent in all they do. It continues to by my honor and delight to work in partnership with Dory Greene, our journal’s managing editor, as we share a passion in what we do. I appreciate beyond words her expertise, dedication, professionalism, and kindness.

Our Women’s Healthcare journal team includes editors, authors, peer reviewers, EAB members, publisher and publishing staff, and NPWH staff, board of directors (BOD), and CEO Gay Johnson. We all look forward to continuing to provide you with a variety of high-quality, interesting, and clinically relevant articles in 2019.

Beyond the journal, I want to recognize individuals who have participated on writing groups that create NPWH position statements. These individuals bring expertise and dedication to a process that takes time, discussion, and an ability to interact in a meaningful way to create a product that reflects the NPWH mission and values. In 2018, the NPWH BOD approved four new position statements:

Cervical Cancer Screening

Men with Breast Conditions: The Role of the WHNP Specializing in Breast Care

Male Sexual and Reproductive Health: The Role of WHNPs

Brain Health is Women’s Health

The writing group members for these position statements are:

Reviewers and individuals who provide feedback through public comment strengthen our position statements. I want to thank all who participated in this process.

We expect 2019 to be another busy year as NPWH continues to grow and provide the services and products we hear that our members want. We look forward to seeing you at NPWH events and hearing from you throughout the year!




Editor-in-chief’s message

Dear Colleagues,

What a wonderful time of the year—spring is in full swing, and many of us are planning for summertime events. As we move into summer, I invite you to take a few minutes to reflect on nurse practitioners (NPs) in the world of women’s health who have been an inspiration to you and others. With its Inspiration in Women’s Health Awards, NPWH gives us an opportunity to recognize and celebrate NPs who have inspired us. These awards will be presented at our 21st Annual NPWH PremierWomen’s Healthcare Conference, which will take place in San Antonio, Texas, on October 10-13, 2018. Continue reading »

Editor-in-chief’s message: Women’s Healthcare: A Clinical Journal for NPs (WH) reader survey

Dear Colleagues,

Thank you to everyone who completed our recent Women’s Healthcare: A Clinical Journal for NPs (WH) reader survey. We received 481 responses. The information you provided is very helpful to us as we continue to strive to bring you articles on topics of the utmost importance and interest. As a team, the WH editing and publishing staff, the WH editorial advisory board, NPWH CEO Gay Johnson, and I do listen to what you, our readers, tell us as we plan content and format.  Continue reading »

Editor-in-chief ’s message

Dear Colleagues,

In January 2017, the NPWH Board of Directors approved our position statement on human sex trafficking, which is published in this issue of the journal. The work of the writing group on the position statement started in October 2016. It seems that, nearly every week since that time, I see something in the media about human trafficking.

At our annual conference last year in New Orleans, Dr. Kimberly Chang gave a highly informative and impassioned presentation on human trafficking. Dr. Chang is nationally known for her advocacy in the prevention of trafficking and the care of trafficking survivors. Along the way, she has provided me with a variety of resources on both sex and labor trafficking that I want to share with all of you.

One of these resources is HEAL – Health, Education, Advocacy, and Linkages. HEAL is an independent network of multidisciplinary professionals dedicated to ending human trafficking and supporting its survivors—from a public health perspective. At the HEAL Trafficking website, you can find educational resources, as well as access a protocol toolkit for healthcare settings.

The Office on Trafficking in Persons (OTIP) is housed within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). At the OTIP website, you can find factsheets, brochures, and posters supporting DHHS’s Look Beneath the Surface campaign, which can be used to increase community awareness about human trafficking. In addition, the website has information on victim assistance services and training resources, and it provides reports on trafficking from other federal agencies.

The Polaris Project provides trafficking statistics, offers information on a variety of trafficking prevention initiatives, and sponsors the National Human Trafficking Hotline (1-888-373-7888) and the BeFree Textline (text HELP to 233733 [BEFREE]). You can find out more on the Polaris Project website.

If you want in-depth and up-to-date information on a variety of trafficking issues, I recommend the textbook Human Trafficking Is a Public Health Issue: A Paradigm Expansion in the United States (2017). This book has 24 chapters covering topics such as Sex Trafficked and Missed, LGBTQ Youth and Vulnerability to Sex Trafficking, Physical Health of Human Trafficking Survivors: Unmet Essentials, Caring for Survivors Using a Trauma-Informed Care Framework, The Ignored Exploitation: Labor Trafficking in the USA, and Human Trafficking: Perspectives on Prevention. You can download individual chapters or purchase the complete book.

NPWH will continue to provide leadership and collaborate with other organizations and agencies to deliver education to increase knowledge and provide resources for NPs to identify, assess, and respond to the needs of trafficked individuals. Furthermore, we will advocate for policies and public health campaigns that will help stop trafficking.