Sarah Goldfine-Ward, MSN, BSN, BA
With a background providing nursing care to underserved communities and the homeless in Philadelphia, Sarah Goldfine-Ward has seen first-hand the health disparities that impact patients who live in impoverished neighborhoods with poor housing options, limited employment options, and food deserts.
Ms. Goldfine-Ward’s past experiences, as an adult nurse practitioner and a coordinator for projects to reduce health disparities at the Haddington Health Center in Philadelphia, help inform the undergraduate and graduate courses she teaches today at Penn Nursing. It is also why she serves as the Penn Nursing adviser for Penn’s Student Hotspotting team, a group of interprofessional students from nursing, medicine and social work who help identify patients who are high utilizers of emergency rooms and hospitals in their community.
Penn’s Student Hotspotting team is one of 31 at 27 schools nationwide participating in the Interprofessional Student Hotspotting Learning Collaborative. Co-hosted by the Association of American Medical Colleges, the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers, and Primary Care Progress, the collaborative educates and supports Hotspotting teams as they connect with patients and learn about the root causes of high healthcare utilization.
“We help our students develop into really thoughtful nurses who put their patients first in a rapid-paced health care system.”
- MSN, University of Pennsylvania , 2002
- BSN, Thomas Jefferson University , 1998
- BA, University of Pennsylvania , 1988
Opportunities to Learn and Collaborate at Penn Nursing
Ms. Goldfine-Ward is co-course director of two courses: “Leadership in the Complex Health Care System” (NURS390) and “Pathways to Practice” (NURS159). “Leadership in the Complex Health Care System” prepares undergraduate nursing students for their roles as health care leaders at the bedside, in their units and agencies, and in the nursing profession. The comprehensive course involves didactic studies, seminars focused on health specialties, and individualized clinical experiences in which nurses in the types of units and agencies in which the students hope to work precept them.
The course also includes interprofessional education experiences that allow nursing students to collaborate with medical students and social work students from Penn along with pharmacy students from the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. In one of these experiences, students follow nurses, physicians, and other healthcare professionals at various hospitals and agencies to learn how interprofessional teams work together. They also participate in a dramatic experiential learning exercise called “Bedside Manners,” where students role-play physicians and nurses in order to learn how to handle conflicts that may arise at a patient’s bedside and better handle difficult interprofessional communication.
“Pathways to Practice” is an introductory course for accelerated, second-degree nursing students (those with a bachelors degree in other fields) that introduces them to the nursing profession. Ms. Goldfine-Ward also teaches the physical assessment lab component of “Advanced Physical Assessment and Clinical Decision-Making” (NURS657) to small groups of graduate students. Outside the classroom, Ms. Goldfine-Ward serves as an undergraduate adviser, working with undergraduate nursing students to plan their course of studies and develop their individual interests.
Selected Career Highlights
- Member, Community Engagement and Course Directors Committees, Penn Nursing
- Member, Interprofessional Education Initiatives Committee, University of Pennsylvania and University of the Sciences