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Mar 15 2012

NYIT Department of Nursing's Colloquium Focuses on Alternative Therapies

Old Westbury, N.Y. (March 15, 2012) ─ Nurses and their patients can benefit from a range of alternative therapies to help them fight stress, feel better, and promote health, according to speakers at NYIT’s annual Department of Nursing Spring Colloquium.
About 300 nurses, health practitioners and nursing students at Riland Auditorium heard inspiring stories and study results from professionals who use and teach therapies such as Reiki, reflexology, aromatherapy, and massage.
Deborah McElligott, a cardiac services nurse at Southside Hospital in Bay Shore opened the conference by leading the crowd in a calming and centering exercise focused on breathing awareness.
“Even something like breathing awareness can affect the body, mind, and spirit,” she said.
Nurses who practice holistically, aiming to heal the whole person, can use guided imagery and touch to help patients heal, she said.
McElligott also recounted several cases where patients’ stress levels decreased after she worked with them to uncover troubling or sad episodes in their lives.
“In nursing, we’ve been looking at the stories of patients for years,” she said. “This is really a return to our roots.”
McElligott said nurses need to incorporate stress management techniques and healthy practices into their lives. Teamwork and peer support, she said, also can help nurses who endure long hospital shifts and demanding patient loads.
Other speakers discussed Reiki, a Japanese healing practice using touch, and meditation as therapies that nurses can use with patients.
Previous Department of Nursing spring conferences have focused on men’s health, women’s health, geriatrics, palliative care and health literacy.
About NYIT
New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) offers 90 degree programs, including undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees, in more than 50 fields of study, including architecture and design; arts and sciences; education; engineering and computing sciences; health professions; management; and osteopathic medicine. A non-profit independent, private institution of higher education, NYIT has 14,000 students attending campuses on Long Island and Manhattan, online, and at its global campuses. NYIT sponsors 11 NCAA Division II programs and one Division I team.
Led by President Edward Guiliano, NYIT is guided by its mission to provide career-oriented professional education, offer access to opportunity to all qualified students, and support applications-oriented research that benefits the larger world. To date, 89,000 graduates have received degrees from NYIT. For more information, visit
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