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Thank you Dean Bleich for your letter of support for H.R. 485, The National Nurse Act of 2013
Dear President Mills,
As we begin an unprecedented federal plan to shift the nation from its present sick-care system to one based on prevention and wellness, it is critical that our country has strong, visible national nursing leadership. That is why I write today in strong support of HR 485, The National Nurse Act of 2013. Elevating the Chief Nurse Officer of the USPHS to full time and designating this position to be known as the National Nurse for Public Health will bring more recognition to the critical and important role nursing fulfills in promoting, protecting, and advancing the nation's health.
Chronic conditions, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and others pose the single greatest threat to the health of Americans and our nation's economy. Nurses have proven time and again that they are effective messengers, advocates, and mentors for healthy living and, according to a recent survey released by the International Council of Nurses, they have a strong desire to use their skills to enable individuals and communities to enhance their wellness. The National Nurse for Public Health will be a strong advocate for nursing involvement in health policy and will provide leadership in generating a stronger and much needed community wide focus on prevention.
This position will generate pride, stimulate interest, and sanction volunteerism without requiring new allocations, creating new positions or duplicating existing services. I commend the efforts and dedication of the National Nursing Network Organization in bringing the National Nurse Act of 2013 to fruition and welcome the opportunity to support in this endeavor.
Michael R. Bleich, PhD, RN, FAAN
Maxine Clark and Bob Fox Dean and Professor
Goldfarb School of Nursing at Barnes-Jewish College
Member 10M Committee on the Future of Nursing