“You must never so much think as whether you like it or not, whether it is bearable or not; you must never think of anything except the need, and how to meet it.” ― Clara Barton, Nurse & Founder of the American Red Cross
Each year for a week, in honor of Florence Nightingale’s birthday on May 12, we celebrate those individuals who have dedicated their lives to a profession that is among the most noble, demanding and rewarding: Nursing.
Nurses are important ambassadors of the patient and family experience because they are on the frontlines delivering care and comfort 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. They are in classrooms, labs and clinics training future generations of nursing professionals and discovering ways to improve care and care delivery. They are in the community working and volunteering at shelters and in schools. And, across the country, nursing professionals are strong voices for innovation and change when it comes to shaping health care policy and influencing health care reform.
Under the steadfast leadership of Kate Potempa, Dean of the U-M School of Nursing, and Margaret Calarco, Chief Nurse at UMHHC, nursing at Michigan is thriving and our institution continues to be regarded as one of the country’s best academic nursing centers. The School’s Master’s Program is the sixth best in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report, its research-focused Ph.D. programs rank in the National Research Council’s top 5 percent and it ranks sixth in NIH research funding. Additionally, it is a hub of groundbreaking innovation, as demonstrated by being the first U.S. nursing school to partner with the Peace Corps’ Masters International Program, achievement of a 5-year grant to fund the prestigious Hillman Scholars Program in Nursing Innovation, and, in partnership with the UMHS nursing community, establishing the Clinical Initiative for Excellence in Education, Practice and Scholarship to improve the quality and safety of nursing care practice and delivery. UMHS nurses have influenced the profession by publishing more than 50 manuscripts and book chapters this past year alone and presenting more than 70 paper and poster presentations to national and international audiences. Additionally, the Health System’s new Nursing governance model is enabling deeper partnerships with patients and families and establishing new models of nursing care. As clinical mentors to the hundreds of nursing students we serve, our nurses join with nursing students and faculty to educate our next generation of nurses and create the future of health care delivery.
From care at the bedside to outpatient appointments to nursing education and research to professional and peer support and mentorship, there is no more committed community of nurses than the 4,000 plus nursing professionals at Michigan.
While it shouldn’t take a national event to remind us to thank the incredible nursing professionals who enable excellence across our Health System and University, there certainly is no better time for all of us to offer gratitude to the nursing heroes, teachers, mentors and leaders in our community. Thank you for all that you do!!