UMass Midwifery Nurse Professor Named Continence Care Champion

NAFC presented Katharine O’Dell, PhD, CNM, with its Rodney Appell Continence Care Champion award

April 1, 2013 (CHARLESTON, SC) - The National Association For Continence (NAFC)presented Katharine O’Dell, PhD, CNM, with its Rodney Appell Continence Care Champion award at the Society of Urologic Nurses and Associates’ (SUNA) 2013 Annual Symposium in Savannah, GA on March 9, 2013. Cheryl LeCroy, MSN, RN, secretary of NAFC’s Board of Directors and SUNA president-elect, announced the award at the awards luncheon of the national meeting.

O’Dell is an associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Having received awards ranging from an Excellence in Teaching Award from the Association of Professors of Gynecology and Obstetrics (APOG) in 2001 to a Nurse Practitioner Exemplar Award from UMass Memorial in 2011, O’Dell is recognized for her work in improving professional education in the field of women’s health. Understanding the importance of continued research, she serves as research abstract reviewer for the annual meeting of the American College of Nurse Midwives and for the International Confederation of Midwives. Her own research has been published in the Journal of Urologic Nursing and other professional journals.

With an interest in prevention and management of female pelvic floor disorders, O’Dell has presented regionally and nationally on post-partum gynecologic pelvic pain, bowel problems in women and the management of urinary incontinence. She has collaborated with three past Continence Care Champions—Carolyn Sampselle, PhD, Mary Palmer, PhD, RNC, and Leslie Wooldrige, GNP-BC—in publishing population-based prevention strategies. “Kate’s work has served as a valuable means of elevating the importance of continence care, not only in our practice, but in all clinical practices,” said Michael Flynn, MD, chief of the Division of Urogynecology & Reconstructive Pelvic Surgery at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. “To have NAFC’s highest award bestowed upon a member or our faculty is quite an honor. Kate continues to serve as a mentor to health care providers to improve their knowledge in the field of continence care. For this she is well deserving of this award.”

Established in 2000 to recognize health care providers who serve as role models to others for outstanding contributions in research, education and clinical practice, NAFC’s Rodney Appell Continence Care Champion Award raises awareness among a variety of professional societies and elevates the importance of addressing incontinence. A listing of all past award recipients can be found on NAFC’s website, in the Hall of Fame. Renamed in memory of Dr. Rodney Appell in 2009, this award is in honor of Dr. Appell’s dedication to patient education and advocacy. A special education fund, created to help continue Dr. Appell’s legacy, has been established by NAFC.

Media Contact:
Steve Gregg, PhD
Exceutive Director