A recent press release from the California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee announced a new advertising campaign to coincide with increased treatment of nursing in pop culture. Moving forward from the doctor-driven medical dramas of television, shows like Nurse Jackie and HawthoRNe are on the rise. The ad campaign from the three nursing organizations at the heart of our new, national RN SuperUnion will launch with the debut of HawthoRNe, advocating for a safe RN staffing levels bill and nurse rights.
The CNA/NNOC will join forces with the United American Nurses and the Massachusetts Nurses Association to debut the advertisement on TNT beginning June 16. These three groups recently joined forces to create the first national union of RNs with 150,000 members. Their ad campaign will highlight working, direct-care nurses from around the country.
According to the CNA/NNOC:
?The commercial asks viewers to consider a 'world without nurses,' and points out that, 'When nurses disappear, so does patient safety.' Patients are asked to 'insist on safe nursing staffing levels,' in the face of a national crisis in patient care caused by routine understaffing of hospital units, a travesty that leads to tens of thousands of unnecessary patients deaths yearly.?
The national nurses movement hopes to be updated with nurses' opinions on topics including the new federal patient safety bill, which would establish safe nurse staffing in hospitals.
The bill being promoted is S1031, the National Nursing Shortage and Patient Advocacy Reform Act, introduced by Sen. Barbara Boxer. If passed into law, it would ensure nation-wide safe staffing practices, and give nurses whistle-blower and patient advocacy protections.
?It?s about time for nurses to be represented in popular culture, but there are important questions that RNs will consider as we watch these shows. We know these shows are Hollywood entertainment, but they?re purporting to speak in the name of nurses, so we are watching and taking note. Will these shows reflect the struggle of nurses to care for their patients in the face of heartless insurance and hospital bureaucracy? Will they reflect the terrible burden of being overloaded with too many patients who are too sick? We look forward to finding out,? said Deborah Burger, RN, co-President of CNA/NNOC.
?We need a national dialogue about the important work that nurses do, and this is happening just as our national nurses movement has come together for the good of all nurses and patients everywhere,? said UAN President Ann Converso, RN. ?We?re excited that Sen. Boxer is taking the lead in the Senate on safe RN staffing, joining our friends in the House?Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) and Rep. John Conyers (D-MI)?in putting real, concrete solutions to the nurse staffing crisis on the table. We must make safe RN staffing ratios the law of the land; anything less puts our patients at risk.?
?As patient advocates, we have to take this opportunity of these new television shows to press our agenda of safe staffing. Nurses have seen too many patients suffer unnecessarily because of the crisis in care caused by hospital understaffing. We are delighted for the chance to make this connection for our fellow nurses and the public,? said Beth Piknick, RN, President of MNA.