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Monday, November 24, 2008

Thanksgiving in America

This week many of us will gather with family, neighbors, and friends to express thanks for our many blessings. Yet this is not the happiest or healthiest of times for our country. Too many of our citizens remain without healthcare, especially those in under-served communities. Unemployment is skyrocketing while our economy plummets. Some people in this nation, including many seniors and families with children, are facing food insecurity because they simply can't afford to buy groceries. The war continues on two fronts separating families and putting our troops in harm's way. In many states, natural disasters and wildfires have destroyed property and disrupted thousands of lives.

The NNNO Board of Directors asks you to consider making a donation to your community's food bank. The need for food is acute across the nation; the demand is rapidly outpacing the supply and many food cupboards are bare. Food pantries are in need of non-perishable food items of every type, including canned goods, cereal, coffee and juice, as well as toiletry items like toothpaste and brushes, bandages and medication.

If you are thinking about sending one of our nation's troops a care package for the holidays, please visit Any Soldier's website for lots of helpful information, including where to send your package, how to send it, and what to put in it.

When you are writing your Christmas cards this year, please join us and write one card to send to our troops. Here is a link that provides information from the American Red Cross on the best way to mail your cards. If we pass this on and everyone sends one card, think how many cards these wonderful special people who have sacrificed so much would receive.

We are personally very grateful and truly overwhelmed by your continued emails and offers of support as we work together to establish an Office of the National Nurse for prevention.

The National Nursing Network Organization Team—Monday, November 24, 2008   Post only 

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Monday, November 17, 2008

Charting Nursing’s Future

Two reports published last month by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation highlighted the need to strengthen and expand public health nursing leadership and programs. The presence of public health nurses has decreased significantly in the past few decades due to lack of funding, loss of exposure of students to clinical experiences, and a large retirement of the public health nursing workforce. These factors have driven the public health system into decentralization and fragmentation, and the role of the public health nurse has become less recognized and blurred with the role of the community health nurse.

The reports also cite public health experts as calling for increased nursing executive leadership at the state level to direct public health initiatives and advocate for funding. Various experts acknowledge in these reports that a more collaborative systematic approach to funding and attention to the importance of the public health nurse role are needed. We found that although the reports cite numerous examples of successful community level prevention programs that save lives and taxpayer dollars, these programs could have a greater impact on the health of the nation if replicated on a broader scale.

RWJF recognizes that historically nurses have been frontline deliverers of public health initiatives addressing prevention of communicable diseases and response to disaster and emergency situations, “Yet despite their central role in these endeavors, nurses were typically absent from key policy discussions.” Charting Nursing's Future, Part Two

As the public health demands of the 21st century become more evident, the need for a national focus on prevention, health protection, and promotion for the population of the country, not just the populations within each state, is clearer. The Office of the National Nurse would provide the representation, visibility, and advocacy now needed for the nursing profession. A National Nurse would also be a spokesperson for the policies and funding crucial to boosting the nation's public health infrastructure.

The National Nursing Network Organization Team—Monday, November 17, 2008   Post only 

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Monday, November 10, 2008

From Sick Care to Health Care

Thank you to Shelby Evans, Associate Editor of Advance for NURSES for her accurate and inspiring editorial From Sick Care to Health Care. Here is an excerpt from her piece:

"The uninsured. Exorbitant healthcare costs. Epidemic obesity. Preventable deaths. At a time when news on the healthcare front is seldom good, an initiative is gradually gaining traction that offers an option for bringing nursing to the forefront as a solution.

Three years ago Teri Mills, MS, RN, ANP, CNE, a nurse educator in Portland, OR, began developing a proposal that would establish a national nurse. Part advocate, part leader and part icon, this full-time position would be an expansion of the existing role of chief nursing officer within the U.S. Public Health Service.

Through the new Office of the National Nurse, the profession would gain a visible and authoritative leader on-par with the Office of the Surgeon General, and the public would benefit from coordinated, locally activated health promotion efforts."

Click here to read the rest of Shelby's article.

The National Nursing Network Organization Team—Monday, November 10, 2008   Post only 

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Tuesday, November 04, 2008

If You Have Questions, We Have Answers!

The National Nursing Network Organization's Board of Directors hears daily from nurses across the nation who want to see change in our health care system. They tell us that it is the role of the nurse to help those we care for remain functional and well. Often we receive questions about the Office of the National Nurse initiative. We received an excellent suggestion from a supporter who recommended we add a Frequently Asked Question (FAQ) link to The National Nurse website.

Here is a question we commonly hear:

We do not need a National Nurse because the Chief Nurse Officer of the USPHS is already the National Nurse.

This position/role is not well understood by nurses or the public. The title itself would indicate a position of stature and widespread recognition, yet few can name the Chief Nurse Officer (CNO) of the USPHS or describe the role and responsibilities. Congressional action is needed to formally bestow the title of National Nurse on the CNO to provide the status, authority and public recognition to lead mass scale prevention efforts and shift to a culture of prevention in US healthcare. The position also needs to become full, rather than half time, and focused on leading prevention efforts by encouraging all nurses and future nurses to spread prevention messages in their communities.

If you have a question or a suggestion about the ONN initiative please email Teri .

The National Nursing Network Organization Team—Tuesday, November 04, 2008   Post only 

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