Thank you, Nurses for all that you do.
The entire country is celebrating you for your courage, resilience, and commitment to promoting the health and wellbeing of others—every day, and especially during the pandemic. With May being recognized as National Nurses Month by the American Nurses Association (ANA), we’re expressing our heartfelt gratitude for our nurses and future nurse leaders.
During a prolonged and challenging pandemic, your dedication and hope has touched countless lives. We know you’ve been working long hours and saving lives. We also know that you’ve been tested and have grown both personally and as a nurse. At Carson-Newman University, we’re proud to support you in your educational journey and are grateful for all you do.
We encourage you to use National Nurses Month as a reason to step back and enjoy some well deserved time to recharge. While you’re celebrating your wins from the past year, read our latest blog to reflect on the ways that you’ve made a difference.
Let us say it again—Thank you, Nurses!
Thank You, Nurses, for Holding the Front Lines
Nurses have always been a pillar of our health care system, making up more than half of the industry’s workforce. From hospitals to clinics to schools and beyond, nurses have been stationed on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Though your work and dedication in these settings are never easy, the last several years have been tumultuous; it introduced challenges and uncertainty like never before. You had to head into battle flying blind—with limited information and a lack of personal protective equipment (PPE).
The neverending shifts and restless nights. The family you became when others couldn’t visit your patients. While many of us sheltered in place, you put your health on the line to save lives and sometimes, to be a final comfort for those who lost their fight with the virus.
During staff shortages, you’ve aided and empowered your colleagues. You were also a part of promoting the new standard of care that evolved during the pandemic.
One positive that Joanne Potter, RN, BSN states is “...the use of HIPAA compliant video and photos that we could send to our parents in the NICU [which was] especially useful since only one parent could be at the bedside at a time.”
Nurse leaders throughout the industry also lent critical support. Family nurse practitioners (FNPs) stepped up in long-term care facilities and rural settings where their expertise filled accessibility gaps that put some of our most vulnerable populations at even greater risk of complications from the virus.
Today, you and your colleagues are an essential arm of vaccination teams throughout communities, helping to bring this virus under control. You work endlessly to establish and staff vaccination centers, coordinate within health systems, train others, and monitor patients for symptoms post-vaccination.
Because of you, hope never wavered. Words cannot express the amount of gratitude we extend to our nurses!
Thank You, Nurses, for Educating Communities
In your role as a nurse, you’re usually the first and most frequent person that patients interact with. Whether it’s by the bedside or remotely, you’ve developed a keen understanding of your patients. You know their symptoms, their history, personal dynamics, and anxieties.
That patient rapport you’ve cultivated serves as a springboard to change lives for the better.
In fact, one study reports that out of patients who experienced heart failure, those who received nurse-directed education on lifestyle modifications, diet, and medication compliance showed significant improvement to their quality of life—ranging from overall health and function, to social, psychological and spiritual well being.
Thanks to your guidance, commitment to patient education, and professional expertise, individuals, families, and communities can live healthier, happier lives.
Carson-Newman’s Program Director, Dr. Kimberly Bolton, says it best, “If we truly want to make an impact on disease processes, then we have to start education for prevention and maintenance every time [we meet with a patient].”
Throughout the pandemic, nurses and FNPs have raised awareness about COVID-19, promoted best practices for safety precautions, and dispelled misinformation.
You’ve also been instrumental in migrating care to virtual platforms, and teaching both your patients and your peers how to navigate new technologies—and never skipped a beat while you learned as well.
Thank You, Nurses, for Advocating for Patients
Nurses are first and foremost, advocates. It’s the profound ability to genuinely connect with people and provide patient-centered care that makes nurses shine.
Throughout the pandemic, nurses have advocated in a number of ways—from stressing the need for PPE to strengthen the continuity of care, to urging governments to prepare for COVID-19 surges, to encouraging community spread mitigation tactics. Nurses have been a continuous voice in promoting patient safety.
We are all the beneficiaries of your efforts, which have resulted in increased PPE and evidence-based ordinances and restrictions that are helping us bring the pandemic to an end and save lives.
In addition to day-to-day advocacy, many nurses found inspiration to expand their reach by aspiring to the FNP role. With their ability to treat individuals, families, and communities, FNPs have the opportunity to advocate on both an immediate and long-term scale.
“People do not need to be treated like a number. They need to be treated with compassion, they need to be treated with respect,” says Rhonda McAnally, a student of Carson-Newman’s online MSN-FNP program.
Thank You, Nurses, for Your Emotional Support
Compassion is at the core of the nursing profession—so much so that in the thick of the pandemic, Mental Health America found that more than half of nurses reported experiencing an understandable increase in compassion fatigue.
The American Psychological Association identifies some symptoms of compassion fatigue such as:
- Loss of productivity
- Intrusive thoughts
- Jumpiness and/or tiredness
- Feelings of being on-edge
- Inability to separate personal and professional life
Despite the emotional toll it takes to be a nurse in today’s dynamic health care environment, you still carry on.
Whether we’re receiving a diagnosis or dialysis, you’re there to ease fears, listen as we vent frustrations, voice our concerns about symptoms, and celebrate with us when we reach survivorship.
The emotional support you’ve provided has not only impacted lives, but reinforced the value and societal need for nurses during the pandemic.
Thank you, nurses, for demonstrating what it means to bring passion and professionalism to your work. Each time you save a life or ease someone’s pain, you don’t just help that patient—you spread hope to their family, friends, and community.
Thank You, Nurses, for a Better Tomorrow
Thank you, Nurses for inspiring us today and tomorrow. At Carson-Newman, we hope to inspire you.
As integral as nurses are to our health care system, it’s estimated that an additional 9 million nurses will be needed by 2030. Nurse practitioners (NPs) are also in demand to lead nurse teams and help bridge gaps in patient care. It is projected that 335,200 NPs will be needed by 2030—a 52% increase from the 2020 workforce.
The NP role offers a fulfilling and rewarding opportunity for nurses to make health care more accessible to underserved populations with a compassionate, patient-centered, holistic approach.
Kristy Fleming, online MSN-FNP student, hopes to expand her impact in the community setting. “[I want] to have a clinic available to those that don't have medical care elsewhere.”
If you’re ready to play an even bigger role in the future of health care, Carson-Newman’s online Master of Science in Nursing – Family Nurse Practitioner may be the next step for you. C-N’s online MSN-FNP program will prepare you with the skills you need to be a confident holistic FNP.
If you already have an MSN, consider a post-master’s FNP certificate, which gives you access to leadership opportunities as well as the fulfillment and autonomy of a family primary care provider. With Carson-Newman’s PMC-FNP Certificate, you can broaden your scope of practice and become an FNP leader.