1. Vance, Connie EdD, RN, FAAN

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The new Center to Champion Nursing in America (Editorial, February) could be a strong initiative to support nursing. But with many such movements, after an initial flurry of activity it's back to "business as usual" in health care: the profit-making motive, the devaluing of nurses, and the lack of informed leadership. Jo Ann Ashley, in the second edition of her 1976 book Hospitals, Paternalism, and the Role of the Nurse, documents the history of the exploitation of and condescension toward nurses, leading to a misuse of nurses' skills and contributing to health care's woes.


As an educator, I hear many horror stories of novice nurses: they're given meager orientation; placed with very ill patients on night shifts with little backup; coerced to work overtime; and bullied by senior nurses, physicians, and managers.


Yes, nurses should form partnerships with the public. But we must also examine our attitudes toward our profession and our colleagues; inform legislators, accrediting bodies, and consumers of the "real world" of nursing; speak against unsafe and unethical practices; and mentor new nurses.


Connie Vance, EdD, RN, FAAN


New Rochelle, NY


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