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MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing

August 2010, Volume 35 Number 4 , p 186 - 187


  • Heidi VonKoss Krowchuk PhD, RN, FAAN
  • Nancy M. Albert PhD, RN, CCNS, CCRN, NE-BC, FAHA, FCCM
  • Cherrie Bowen BSN, MBA, RN


Imagine this: you are a visitor entering a hospital to visit a family member. You know the floor and the name of the unit where your family member is recuperating, and now you need the room number. You arrive at the desk and there's a rainbow of colored uniforms. Who is the nurse? Who is the secretary? Are all these people around the desk nurses? If so, why are they all at the desk and not in patient's rooms providing care? As a nurse, you know that these people can be techs, secretaries, food service workers, maintenance people, lab personnel, or any other type of hospital employee. If you communicate with the wrong person, you may not get the answer you seek. You don't want to bother the wrong person, but who is the nurse?In my opinion, nurses should be instantly identifiable to patients, visitors, and even other healthcare providers. Being able to see that a given person is a nurse because of the uniform color promotes better communications with our patients and everyone

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