SON Faculty Dr. Elissa Ladd Recognized for Global Work

May 10, 2019
Elissa Ladd
Dr. Ladd at the United Nations, where she was recognized by Nurses With Global Impact on International Nurses Day.

MGH Institute of Health Professions Associate Professor of Nursing Elissa Ladd was among 21 nurses from around the globe who were honored by the non-profit organization Nurses With Global Impact May 10 at the 3rd Annual Celebration of International Nurses Day.

Ladd, PhD, RN, is the director of the Boston graduate school’s Global Health Equity and Innovations program in the School of Nursing. She was recognized for her outstanding leadership, creativity, and compassion in the field of nursing. She and the other nurses who are impacting lives with quality care and comfort and serving as role models for future generations of care givers were recognized at the United Nations in New York.

Dr. Ladd has had a lifelong commitment to the health of the vulnerable populations, both in the United States and globally. As a young student and nurse, she worked with midwives in an inner-city clinic in Lima, Peru, with Cambodian refugees in camps on the Thai/Cambodian border, and with the Indian Health Service on the Navaho Reservation.

Over the past several years, Ladd has developed and led a yearly interprofessional education global health immersion program for more than 50 students in the MGH Institute’s nurse practitioner, occupational therapy, physical therapy, physician assistant studies, and speech-language pathology programs.

The initiative grew out of a Fulbright Fellowship that Ladd was awarded in 2012, when she was the only nurse faculty member to be awarded the prestigious scholarship for work in India. During the six months she spent at Manipal University in India, she taught research methodology to graduate nursing students, conducted seminars with the College of Pharmaceutical Sciences and the Kasturba Medical College, and initiated a research project on drug counseling behaviors by nurses in India. Currently, she is working with Manipal University to implement one of the first nurse practitioner programs in India.

Ladd’s other work focuses on building capacity for educators and health professions students in India. She conducts seminars for Indian faculty both in person and remotely and holds clinical instructional sessions for Indian nurse practitioner students. Additionally, she participates in clinical and teaching activities in village clinics.  

She has expanded her work through a grant from the U.S. India Educational Foundation, a cooperative organization supported by the US Department of State and the government of India. The project will afford Indian faculty the opportunity to cultivate professional and/or research collaborations with health professions educators from the U.S. via exchange visits and other collaborative activities.

Ladd has proven herself to be a leader in global health professions education. By designing and implementing projects that expand the capacity of health professions education in India, her work reflects a significant impact on the future of healthcare education and delivery in the Indian context. Her efforts exemplify the notion that enduring, sustainable change can be effectively inculcated through education.