This June, Bucky Badger and the Ice Age Trail Alliance mascot, Monty the Mammoth, visited the Hematology, Oncology, Bone Marrow Transplant unit at University Hospital (B6/6) in celebration of completing the MOVIN Ice Age Trail Challenge and the great work patients and staff have done to reach the goals and improve the amount of time and distances patients walk on the unit.
In January 2023, B6/6 launched the MOVIN project—Mobilizing Older adults Via systems-based Intervention—to support patient ambulation by removing barriers that prevent nursing staff from getting patients up to walk. The unit’s involvement is part of a larger federally funded research study between the UW–Madison School of Nursing and UW Health to evaluate the effectiveness of MOVIN on improving patient functional outcomes and reducing length of stay and readmissions.
Professor Barb King, PhD, RN, APRN-BC, FAAN, and Associate Dean Linsey Steege, PhD, designed MOVIN to address the need for ambulation in patients who enter the hospital and quickly become debilitated due to limited ambulation, bedrest, medications, disease process, surgeries, etc. King and Steege are tracking distances that patients walk, sending out weekly information on the unit’s progress, and celebrating B6/6 accomplishments with fun activities and prizes. B6/6 chose “walking the Ice Age Trail” as their destination.
“We needed a destination to motivate patients and staff to reach ambulation goals,” stated Deb Segersten, interim manager for B6/6. “One of our nursing assistants had walked the Ice Age Trail and suggested we start there. We created white boards for each patient to track how far they were walking, while Barb and her team provided distances each week based on a report they ran in EPIC, which served as great motivation for our patients and team.”
The Ice Age Trail, located entirely in Wisconsin, traverses scenic landscapes and helps tell the story of the last Ice Age by highlighting Wisconsin’s unique glacial features. One of the goals for B6/6 was walking to Madison as part of the trail, so it was only fitting to have Bucky Badger and the Ice Age Trail mascot, Monty the Mammoth, visit B6/6 to celebrate.
“When I was recently rounding on patients, I met a patient who was so impressed with the initiative having seen our bulletin board, the map of the Ice Age Trail in the hallway, it inspired the patient to go out walking with the MOVIN mobility aide,” states Deb. “That’s been the most important part—seeing patients recognize and understand why we are doing this for their benefit and appreciate it!”