Barton named Mordecai Endowed Chair in Rural Health Nursing

By Staff


Amy Barton, RN, Ph.D., and professor and associate dean for clinical and community affairs at the University of Colorado College of Nursing at the Anschutz Medical Campus, has been appointed to the Daniel and Janet Mordecai Endowed Chair in Rural Health Nursing.

The endowed chair was funded by a $1.9 million gift from Janet Mordecai in 2007 that included four graduate student Rural Health Nursing Endowed Fellowships.

"This gift from the Daniel and Janet Mordecai Foundation will provide wonderful opportunities for the new chair to work with nursing educators, clinicians and rural health leaders in enhancing health services and strengthening the rural health work force for the people of Colorado," said Patricia Moritz, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, dean of the College of Nursing. "The selection of Dr. Barton is a wonderful choice to continue to expand the focus on rural health within the college."

Barton has worked extensively in sustaining nurse-managed clinics locally and nationally with a focus on the underserved. She also has provided faculty development workshops throughout rural and urban areas of Colorado to advance nursing education with an emphasis on patient care quality and safety, and she is a campus leader in expanding Inter-Professional Education among all of the health professions schools.

Barton's vision as the new Rural Health Nursing chair includes working with Colorado's regional Area Health Education Center (AHEC) directors as well as initiating a network with the Mordecai Rural Health Fellows to develop a plan for better access to health care and nursing education in rural Colorado.

"I am honored by this appointment," Barton said. "Nurses care for patients and their families every day across Colorado. I look forward to working with my colleagues at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus and with other health care leaders to enhance the nursing work force."

Barton directs Sheridan Health Services, a nurse-managed clinic serving diverse, low-income clients. She serves as project director for Colorado Quality and Safety Education for Nurses (QSEN), a statewide initiative funded by the Colorado Trust; and she is the National Nursing Faculty Adviser for the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation/Institute for Healthcare Improvement Open School initiative: Retooling for Quality and Safety.

Donor Janet Mordecai, B.S. '65, commented on her funding of the rural health chair: "I am honored to have been given the privilege of endowing the University of Colorado College of Nursing with its first chair in rural health nursing. Since attending this college from 1960-65, I have been drawn to give back to an institution that afforded me a quality education and strong base for my career pathway. My early career was focused in Public Health Nursing where I saw the critical need for nurses to be a vital part of care delivery in rural areas. Working in the federally funded migrant labor camp in Fort Lupton opened my eyes to the special needs of rural Colorado. Now, some 45 years later, there is no longer a migrant labor camp in Fort Lupton, but there still remains a critical need for care in rural communities that are stretched to the limit in terms of being able to attract and retain qualified medical and nursing personnel."