1. Groll, Marlene RN
  2. Newton, Sharon PhD, RN
  3. Clark, Lee A. BS, RN

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Keeping the faith

As a parish nurse, I was happy to read "Nursing in the Faith Community" (Professional Growth, January 2011). After many years of hospital nursing and a knee replacement, I took a 3-day intensive course offered by a university and began to work part-time as a parish nurse, as we're known in my Lutheran denomination. We have a district parish nurse network that lets us get together with other parish nurses to study and share ideas.

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I work mostly with older adults but also serve anyone who needs my services. I loved my years of hospital nursing and have found my experience helpful in teaching, working with families, and helping them make decisions regarding advance directives. I listen and am able to pray with them and, especially with home visits, do a short devotion with them.




Melrose Park, Ill.


Nip gossip in the bud

I'm responding to "Confidentiality: Silly Story or Garden-Variety Gossip?" (Ethical Problems, February 2011).* This involved a nurse who told her patient an amusing (she thought) story about her surgeon, frightening the patient and angering the physician.


When I was in college in the 1960s, Rotary International's Four-Way Test was posted in every room. I'd recommend it to anyone.


Before speaking, ask yourself the following questions:


"1. Is it the truth?


2. Is it fair to all concerned?


3. Will it build goodwill and better friendships?


4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned?"1




Fort Davis, Tex.


1. Rotary International. The Four-Way Test. [Context Link]

No place for placebos


In "Placebos: No Place in Pain Management"* (Controlling Pain, January 2011), the authors report that some healthcare providers still use placebos such as 0.9% sodium chloride injections to manage patients' pain. As the authors stress, placebos should be used only in approved clinical trials with full disclosure; they're not acceptable for managing pain.


Administering a placebo in place of pain medication violates the nursing code of ethics. By working with the patient, nurses and healthcare providers can keep the patient as comfortable as possible.




Plymouth, Mass.


* Individual subscribers can access articles free online at, where everyone can access Lippincott's 2011 Career Directory. [Context Link]