Profile of Frey Seagrove-Nelson, Annual Conference Presenter
Jeffrey "Frey" Peter Seagrove-Nelson, MSN, APRN, PMHNP-BC, a professor with Utah Valley University, presented for the first time at the APNA 30th Annual Conference in Hartford, CT, this past October. His session, "Sexual Health Assessments with Special Attention to Sexual and Gender Minority Populations", was highly rated by attendees for its clear information and perspective on addressing sexual health concerns. One attendee remarked, "I learned more in 45 minutes than I did in 60 years about this content." We spoke to Frey about what drew him to this topic, what he hopes nurses will take away from his session, and his thoughts on presenting at the APNA Annual Conference. See what he has to say below and then submit an abstract of your own for the APNA 31st Annual Conference:
"When I first began to research [sexual health assessments], it became readily apparent that sexual health concerns were not being adequately addressed. As a queer male mental health care consumer and a mental health care provider, I've been on both sides of the table when it comes to sexual health concerns. The worry that comes with asking too much, the anxiety about what is "appropriate", and the worry about judgment can be very real for both parties. Because I've had these experiences, it's made me be keenly aware of how important it is to openly discuss topics of sexual health concerns to ensure we are helping are consumers to live happy, healthy, safe, and fulfilling lives.
I hope nurses will gain from this session an appreciation of the importance of regularly and openly assessing for sexual health concerns during the initial appointment and in every subsequent follow-up appointment, even if it's simply asking a brief question or two. Second, I hope to provide nurses with assessment tools and neutral terminology to help them feel properly equipped to conduct a sexual health assessment. Finally, I hope everyone realizes they don't have to be experts in all of this; it's okay to make mistakes, to feel uncomfortable, and to ask questions: it's the only way we can really learn. [A podcast recording of Frey's session will be available in the APNA eLearning Center soon.]
I chose to present this session at the APNA Annual Conference because I think psychiatric nurses are in the best place to lead the charge on promoting sexual health. Like many other health topics, sexual health is incredibly multifactorial with cause-and-effects stemming into physiological, biological, and psychosocial arenas. Psychiatric nurses are primed to take a holistic approach to consumer health care, and a holistic approach is what's needed for sexual health assessment and promotion...[A]ssessing and promoting the sexual health of our health care consumers falls squarely on our shoulders as mental health care providers. We have the mandate and the responsibility to offer holistic integrated care and that cannot be done if we ignore our health care consumers' sexual well-being.