Source/Disclosures
Source:

National Nurses United. Nation’s Largest Nurses Union to Lead Action at White House During Nurses Week. https://www.nationalnursesunited.org/press/nations-largest-nurses-union-lead-action-white-house-during-nurses-week. Accessed May 7, 2020.

Disclosures: Hastings reports no relevant financial disclosures.
May 08, 2020
2 min read
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Q&A: Nurses demand adequate supply of PPE to combat COVID-19

Source/Disclosures
Source:

National Nurses United. Nation’s Largest Nurses Union to Lead Action at White House During Nurses Week. https://www.nationalnursesunited.org/press/nations-largest-nurses-union-lead-action-white-house-during-nurses-week. Accessed May 7, 2020.

Disclosures: Hastings reports no relevant financial disclosures.
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So far this year, 88 nurses have died of COVID-19 as of May 6, according to National Nurses United, or NNU, the largest union of registered nurses in the United States.

On Thursday, members of the union led a demonstration outside of the White House to honor those who have died from COVID-19 and demand that more action is taken to protect the safety of health care workers on the front lines of the pandemic.

During the demonstration, nurses placed 88 pairs of shoes near the White House, each representing a nurse who lost their life because of an “insufficient” supply of personal protective equipment (PPE), according to NNU.

The Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) released a statement calling for appropriate PPE for nurses that meet National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health standards and are “not downgraded based on supply chain.”

Source: National Nurses United 
Nurses placed 88 pairs of shoes near the White House, each representing a nurse who lost their life because of an “insufficient” supply of PPE, according to NNU.
Source: National Nurses United

In recognition of National Nurses Week — observed each year in the United States from May 6 to 12 — Healio Primary Care spoke with ENA President Mike Hastings, MSN, RN, CEN, about the impact of COVID-19 on emergency nurses and efforts to address their concerns during the pandemic. – by Stephanie Viguers

Q: What are the greatest concerns among nurses on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic?

A: Frontline emergency nurses are concerned first about their personal safety. We have to make sure we are safe so we can stay healthy to continue to respond to the needs of our communities we serve. Part of our safety is focused on having enough PPE to be able to perform our jobs safely. The second concern is around testing — having adequate testing supplies and capabilities to test those who need to be tested.

Q: Do you think nurses are undervalued in the COVID-19 pandemic?

A: I think COVID-19 has helped open the eyes of our communities about the valuable roles that nurses play in our health care settings every day. Nurses are not alone in providing care to our communities. It takes a team of our technicians, environmental services staff, nutrition services staff, unit secretaries and many more in the hospital to provide this care.

Q: In a recent letter, NNU leaders urged House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to reconvene House Representatives using proxy voting and remote committee proceedings to advance a CARES 2 bill. What relief will this bill provide to nurses?

A: CARES 2 is still in early development; however, as we understand, the initial asks are around increased testing and PPE. These are definitely items that ENA fully supports.

Q: What other efforts are needed to address the unmet needs of nurses during the pandemic?

A: We know that many nurses who have been on the front line of this pandemic are now facing the fact that hours are being cut where they work. ENA has been committed to assisting our members through our Foundation’s COVID-19 Relief Fund created to provide financial help to those directly impacted by this public health crisis. Anyone who is able to help support our frontline nurses can visit enatogether.org to make a contribution. The long-term impact of facing a pandemic is also on our minds as far as their mental health and well-being. For that reason, ENA has partnered with other organizations to offer a peer-support system called “Nurses Together: Connections through Conversations” and other self-care resources for our members to be able to process these unprecedented times.

Reference:

National Nurses United. Nation’s largest nurses union to lead action at White House during nurses week. https://www.nationalnursesunited.org/press/nations-largest-nurses-union-lead-action-white-house-during-nurses-week. Accessed May 7, 2020.

Disclosure: Hastings reports no relevant financial disclosures.