National Nurses Week
National Nurse Day, which is also known as National RN Recognition Day, is always celebrated on May 6 and it kicks off National Nurses Week. The week begins on May 6 and ends on May 12
I solemnly pledge myself before God and in the presence of this assembly, to pass my life in purity and to practice my profession faithfully. I will abstain from whatever is deleterious and mischievous, and will not take or knowingly administer any harmful drug. I will do all in my power to maintain and elevate the standard of my profession, and will hold in confidence all personal matters committed to my keeping and all family affairs coming to my knowledge in the practice of my calling. With loyalty will I endeavor to aid the physician in his work, and devote myself to the welfare of those committed to my care.
National Nurses Week Facts
Did you know....?
There are nearly 3.1 million registered nurses in the United States and 2.4 million of them are actively employed.
The American Nurses Association was founded in 1896. Isabel Adams Hampton Robb was the first president of the American Nurses Association.
According to projections released from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, RNs top the list of the top ten occupations with the largest projected job growth in the years 2002-2012. Although RNs made the top ten in years past, this was the first time in recent history that RNs have ranked first.
There are over 240,000 advanced practice nurses in the United States. Of these, approximately 144,200 are nurse practitioners, 69,000 are clinical nurse specialists, 13,700 are nurse midwives and 32,500 are nurse anesthetists.
The research indicates that advanced practice registered nurses can provide 60 to 80 percent of primary care services as well as or better than most physicians and at a lesser cost. Forty-nine states and the District of Columbia allow advanced practice nurses to prescribe medications.
The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) reported that a recent study revealed that patients fared just as well when treated by nurse practitioners as they did when treated by physicians.
Americans registered nurses report that health and safety concerns play a major role in their decisions to remain in the profession, according to a recent finding from Health and Safety Survey. In the survey, over 70% of nurses cited that the acute and chronic effects of stress and overwork as one of their top three health and safety concerns. Yet nurses still continue to push harder; with more than two-thirds reporting that they work some type of unplanned overtime every month.
There are many more interesting facts and surveys that only corroborate what we all know. Nurses are the backbone of the healthcare system and work as hard as they ever did.
Nurses Aim to Reduce Readmissions
Keeping patients with multiple chronic conditions out of the hospital has always been a challenge for healthcare providers, but an increasing awareness of why patients return combined with a push to reduce healthcare costs, has put hospital readmission rates under the national spotlight. A growing number of hospitals, home-health agencies and insurance companies are introducing pilot programs aimed at improving the transitions of patients discharged from a hospital to the community and hoping to reduce the number or patients returning. Almost all of these programs significantly involve nurses: as coaches, educators, care coordinators and patient advocates.
"Nurses play a central role in the prevention of hospital readmissions. This is well-documented in a number of studies," says researcher Mary D. Naylor, RN, PhD, FAAN, professor of gerontology and director of the NewCourtland Center for Transitions and Health at the University Of Pennsylvania School Of Nursing.
A recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that 20% of Medicare patients discharged from hospitals was readmitted within 30 days, and about one in three returned to the hospital within 90 days. The government spends an estimated $12 billion a year on "potentially preventable" readmissions for Medicare patients, according to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission.
Naylor and her colleagues have developed a transitional-care model that uses advance practice nurses to follow high-risk elderly patients from the time they are admitted through the day they return home and the weeks beyond. Nurses visit patients in the hospital every day, make follow-up appointments and accompany patients to doctor visits to help them ask questions and understand answers. They teach patients to assess their own symptoms using a traffic light model, with green for feeling fine, yellow for a minor problem and red for symptoms so severe they should call 911 or go to the ER.
The nurses work with the patients for up to 12 weeks if necessary, though six weeks is sufficient for most. Naylor's studies have shown an average savings of $5,000 per patient one year after hospitalization. Naylor's model is one of the most intensive of readmission prevention projects.
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