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For more information contact:

Dr. Jennifer Skelly 
P: 905-573-4823 
E: skelly@mcmaster.ca

Grace Neustaedter is a Nurse Continence Advisor (NCA) at the Pelvic Floor Clinic in Calgary, Alberta.  She became an NCA to build her knowledge base and credibility for her work with Urogynecologists assessing patients, providing counselling about behavioural methods, and fitting women with pessaries.  

Today she works with women aged 16-100 with pelvic floor dysfunction – bladder, bowel and prolapse issues primarily.  As an NCA she provides educational workshops to new patients three times a week and spends the rest of her time in clinic assessing new patients, helping them with behavioural training, fitting and following up with pessaries, as well as self-catheterization teaching, help with cystoscopies, and urodynamic testing. Grace enjoys working with patients “who are so grateful for the help that is provided for them.”  

Grace works on a multidisciplinary team in an ambulatory clinic that includes nurses, Urogynecologists, a family physician and a team of physiotherapists.  They also have access to a dietitian for nutrition counselling and soon a nurse practitioner will join the team.  The physicians focus on surgical and medical interventions, the nurses the assessments, behavioral training and pessary fitting and care.  Services are provided by referral and are covered by provincial health insurance coverage.  Supplies such as pessaries are usually covered by private health insurance.

Grace’s role as a Clinical Nurse Specialist includes education, clinical practice and assorted administrative responsibilities.  Most days are spent assessing and triaging new patient referrals as well as follow up appointments and phone calls.   She sees patients at the Pelvic Floor Clinic but may also be called to see patients at the main hospital.  Grace also teaches a patient half-day workshop several times a month as well as educational presentations to healthcare providers and students.

“Working in this area has been the most interesting and fulfilling role in my nursing career…women, men and children who are dealing with pelvic floor issues… are amazed to find out how common these problems actually are and how some simple strategies can make such a huge difference.”

Gail Neustaedter