Forget parties- here are the top ten reasons why our country needs a nurse for president.
1. We are skilled communicators.
Nurses are extraordinary communicators. And I am not just talking about verbal communication. We have a way of communicating with our eyes and our hands just as much as our words. We recognize that words are powerful, and we use them carefully. Not to mention that we are seriously the best listeners. The art of listening makes all the difference, because how we react to situations is dependent upon our understanding. This means we don’t typically react hastily or without proper evidence. This is huge.
2. We are advocates.
Nurses are constantly advocating for their patients 24 hours a day. If you are a nurse, you know exactly what I am talking about. No matter what you see or don’t see, we have your back. Our patients often times have no idea what we go through just to ensure their safety and well-being. And believe me when I tell you that we advocate with absolutely no special interests in mind other than yours.
3. We are honest.
Nurses know how precious life is, and we recognize that no one has time for dishonesty. Besides, what good can come from even a simple little white lie? None. Additionally, nurses are consistently ranked as the most trusted profession. We are excellent communicators who can skillfully deliver honesty in a compassionate manner. A nurse will tell you exactly what they would want to know if they were in your shoes. A nurse president would not only be trustworthy in their actions, but would be able to forge sound and solid relationships with others. Just trust us.
4. We know how to collaborate in teams.
Do you know how many people we collaborate with every day? I can’t even count on one hand! Nurses are like little worker bees. We buzz around all day long connecting everyone together and organizing your care across many different services so that your needs are met. Beyond the basic day to day routine, we have to know how to work in a team when the stakes are high. Watching a trauma patient roll into the trauma bay for example is like watching a well-oiled machine. The whole team knows exactly what to do and when. Everyone works together. That is the only option if the patient is to survive. Lack of collaboration in a medical team means failure. In that case, that can mean death. We don’t like to see people die. Especially if we think something could have been done different. We recognize the power and potential in teamwork and truly value how each individual brings a unique bag of skills to the table.
5. We are innovators.
Just tell a nurse that a supply is unavailable and you will see what I mean. We can improvise and innovate like no one’s business. You tell us there are no more seizure pads, and we will tape blankets around your bed. If we observe a consistent problem, chances are we are already working on a solution. For example, c- section rates. Have you heard of that nurse who created a peanut ball for women to use while pregnant to reduce the need for c-sections? Simple, but it works and is absolutely amazing! And it is all because of some keen observations and critical thinking.
6. We always find a way.
This ties in perfectly with the fact that we are innovators. You tell us there is a budget cut, and we still find a way to do what we need to do. You tell us that a certain product is indefinitely unavailable, and we manage around it. There is no such thing as “no” for a nurse. It’s impossible. See point 5 about being an innovator. We truly are a crafty group of professionals. There is an old hospital saying that says, “If no one can do it, a nurse can”. Precisely. A nurse president would always find a way.
7. We think holistically.
Health is dependent upon a variety of factors such as: education, the environment, finances, and access to resources. People suffer from a decreased quality of life typically as a result of a failure in one of these areas. For example, we know that people neglect taking their medications as ordered. They don’t take them because they want to be seen as being “non-compliant”. They just don’t have the finances to pay thousands of dollars a month for their prescriptions! Let’s be honest- some people have to choose between food on their plates or their pills. What would you do? Nurses are experts at understanding the why. A nurse president would change how we look at problems, and consequently how we deal with them.
8. We can go for hours without food, water or a bathroom break.
Seriously. I mentioned above about how much we care. Caring is the greatest attribute that we possess, but it is also our greatest weakness. We care so much about our patients, that sometimes we neglect ourselves. Nurses can go for hours not eating, drinking, or going to the bathroom because there is important work that has to be done. Thus, we have developed unreasonably elastic bladders. (This is clearly not a positive for us) I don’t need to elaborate on this point, but what I can say is that this will come in handy if we ever need to filibuster. Not to mention that we have so many good, juicy stories that we can tell! We could talk a bill to death any day!
9. You will never know how stressed we are.
Nurses stress about a ton of things! A clinical nurse can have anywhere from 2–5 (or more depending on your location) patients to worry about all at the same time! For example, if I have 4 patients, it is not unreasonable to think that I am worrying about at least 8 entirely different problems all at the same time (at least two concerns per person). That is a lot of worrying! And no matter what may be happening in the room next door, nurses try their hardest to ensure that you don’t see the stress carry over. We know how to put on a genuine smile even if our hearts are crushed. Additionally, we manage our stress through triage. This allows us to stop the worst sources of bleeding first. A nurse president would be able to triage national concerns with grace even under the hottest of fires.
10. We care.
Last but not least, we care (in case you haven’t picked up on this yet). Caring is the absolute heart of our profession. We are compassionate and we don’t judge the circumstances of others. Our job is to help others achieve the greatest quality of life possible. We care so much about our patients that pieces of them remain seared in our hearts and minds long after we meet. And years later, we still think about them. It’s also why we go to bed thinking about what more could we have done.
When people care, they act in ways that are caring. There is no question that a nurse president could be the most caring one our country would ever know.
So, if you are a nurse, I encourage you to get involved in your local politics, run for office, or simply vote. It doesn’t matter what party you identify with.
Love and Best of Health
Jasmine Bhatti PhD(c), MS, RN, Co-founder, CEO