1. Yoder-Wise, Patricia S.

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The numbers 2 0 2 0 have a fairly important role in the US culture. Our typical association (at least in health care) is the idea of perfect vision. I find it particularly interesting, therefore, that so much is happening for nursing in 2020. Perhaps this confluence will help our profession envision clearly what educators must do to prepare the future workforce; what must be done by clinical, frontline leaders to attract and retain those workers; and how all of us must support healthy workplaces so that the profession of nursing can thrive.

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Confluence means "a coming or flowing together, meeting, or gathering at one point" (Merriam-Webster, 2020). 2020 is the year that many reports and initiatives related to nursing have come together. This timeline seems fitting because it is also the 200th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale. As you continue to read, consider that although each report or initiative is distinct on its own, each endeavor interrelates with all the others.


This confluence of endeavors is what makes our efforts for the year so important. The following list addresses only the more established or organizationally supported endeavors. I imagine that all organizations for which we work have established activities involving nurses that may relate to those identified below. While this list may seem overwhelming, the core uniting theme is the importance of taking action to bring significance to nursing and what nurses do to improve health care worldwide. The year is marching on so we need to consider what we have accomplished and what remains.




This report is a follow-up to the original Future of Nursing report from the Institute of Medicine (now the Academy of Medicine). Although major progress was made in meeting most of the recommendations in the 2010 report, the 2020-2030 report will emphasize meeting those recommendations and taking on new ones.


Following are challenges under consideration for the Future of Nursing 2020-2030 (as outlined on the campaign website):


* The role of nurses in improving the health of individuals, families, and communities by addressing social determinants of health and providing effective, efficient, equitable, and accessible care for all across the care continuum, as well as identifying the system facilitators and barriers to achieving this goal.


* The current and future deployment of all levels of nurses across the care continuum, including in collaborative practice models, to address the challenges of building a culture of health.


* System facilitators and barriers to achieving a workforce that is diverse, including gender, race, and ethnicity, across all levels of nursing education.


* The role of the nursing profession in assuring that the voice of individuals, families and communities are incorporated into design and operations of clinical and community health systems.


* The training and competency-development needed to prepare nurses, including advanced practice nurses, to work outside of acute care settings and to lead efforts to build a culture of health and health equity, and the extent to which current curricula meet these needs.


* The ability of nurses to serve as change agents in creating systems that bridge the delivery of health care and social needs care in the community.


* The research needed to identify or develop effective nursing practices for eliminating gaps and disparities in health care.


* The importance of nurse well-being and resilience in ensuring the delivery of high-quality care and improving community health.





The World Health Organization (WHO) designated 2020 as the Year of the Nurse and Midwife to commemorate the work nurses do and to call attention to these disciplines, which need 9 million more practitioners by 2030. The State of the World's Nursing report is scheduled to be released on World Health Day, April 7, in time for the meeting of the World Health Assembly in May. Ministers of health (or equivalent) are expected to address the significance of nursing and midwifery in their respective countries. Initiatives for the Year of the Nurse and Midwife include the following (as stated on the campaign's website):


* Invest in more nurse-led and midwife-led services enabling nurses and midwives to work to their full potential


* Employ more specialist nurses


* Make midwives and nurses central to primary health care, providing services and supervising community health workers


* Support nurses and midwives in health promotion and disease prevention


* Invest in nursing and midwifery leadership





The Nightingale Challenge is part of the WHO/International Council of Nurses initiative for the Year of the Nurse. The challenge is designed to engage at least 1,000 organizations in providing leadership development for at least 20,000 nurses and midwives under the age of 35. In providing this development, organizations have the opportunity to illustrate and celebrate the differences these groups can make in health care. The purpose, as noted on the Nightingale Challenge website, is to:


* Help develop the next generation of young nurses and midwives as leaders, practitioners, and advocates in health


* Demonstrate that nursing and midwifery are exciting and rewarding careers.





This effort is a collaboration between WHO and the International Council of Nurses (ICN) and the Burdett Trust for Nursing (United Kingdom). The intent is to raise the status of nursing worldwide. The goals, as outlined on the Nursing Now website, are to:


* Influence universal health coverage, noncommunicable disease, and other policy


* Promote and develop nurse leaders


* Disseminate and share effective practice


* Create, identify, and disseminate evidence of impact


* Invest in all aspects of nursing





Nursing Now USA is the United State initiative related to Nursing Now. Along with the American Nurses Association and the office of the US Public Health Service Chief Nursing Officer two universities have agreed to take the lead: The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Nursing and the University of Washington School of Nursing. Priorities, as outlined on the Nursing Now USA website, include the following:


* Promote Innovation. Nurses are at the forefront of innovations in research, teaching, and care delivery that have a positive impact on the public.


* Develop Policy. Nurses play a vital role in influencing and creating public policy that promotes and protects the health of all and advocates for conditions that support safe and healthy communities.


* Expand Influence as Leaders in Care Delivery. Nurses are fully engaged as leaders locally and globally in the delivery of care by constantly and consistently seeking improvements in care.




Is it important for us to take action? Based on many factors, our response should be yes. This past summer, Medpage Today (Firth, 2019) reported the most cited attribute for patients indicating a high satisfaction score on their health care experience was nurse communication. (The second was the discharge experience and a distant third was the experience with the physician.) When we say patients go to hospitals for nursing care, this information would suggest that is how patients see it too!


Second, a little-publicized report (2019) from the Commonwealth Fund, The New York Times, and the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, indicated that Americans trust only nurses to fix the health care insurance crisis. By a wide margin, nurses were listed in each of three categories (Medicare for All, improving the existing Affordable Care Act [ACA], and replacing the ACA with state health plans), exceeding physicians, hospitals, labor unions, state governments, the federal government, Congress, business leaders, health care insurance companies, and pharmaceutical companies. And, the total percentages indicate that nurses were almost twice as frequently viewed as the ones to trust as physicians.


The public is behind us as we celebrate nursing and take on the challenges of conveying the importance of joining the profession. Our diversity - in our entrance into the profession and our profile - along with our continued commitment to helping people achieve better health care, allows us distinctive experiences with people that few other professions provide.


Patients rate health care based on their interactions with nurses, and the public trusts nurses to solve health care insurance issues. The public is behind us as we celebrate nursing and take on the challenges of conveying the importance of joining the profession. Our diversity - in our entrance into the profession and our profile - along with our continued commitment to helping people achieve better health care, allows us distinctive experiences with people that few other professions provide. Each of us has the opportunity to do something this year - in fact now - to make a difference.




Firth S. (2019, July 30). Hospital patients agree: 'Nurses matter a lot'. Medpage Today. Retrieved from[Context Link]


Merriam-Webster Dictionary. (2020). Retrieved from[Context Link]


The Commonwealth Fund, New York Times, & Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. (2019, October). Americans' values and beliefs about national health insurance reform. Retrieved from[Context Link]