As COVID-19 continues to threaten the health of our nation, nearly 4,000 nurses, students, and other advocates participating in the American Nurses Association’s (ANA’s) Virtual Day of Advocacy used every available strategy to send an urgent message to their members of Congress to reinvest in the public health infrastructure and workforce without delay.
Officially held on June 25, the Virtual Day of Advocacy replaced this year’s traditional, in-person Hill Day event in Washington, D.C. Outreach was strong, with participants sending more than 12,200 email messages to federal lawmakers. Nurses also shared their stories about the importance of public health through Twitter and other social media.
The Virtual Day of Advocacy was promoted in many ways, including outreach to nursing schools across the United States, communications through ANA’s constituent and state nurses associations, social media, and a partnership with The Washington Post among other outlets. Public health affects every individual throughout the country, so it’s an issue nurses and nurse advocates alike can get behind.
Legislative action is needed to rebuild the public health nursing workforce that’s instrumental to the well-being and health of all communities, as well as to an effective response in times of crisis, including the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and public health departments across the nation must be properly funded so they can improve core infrastructure, including workforce capacity, laboratory and health information systems, and communications.
Nurses and other advocates can learn more about this issue and participate in this national campaign at RN Action Center.
In another public health effort
ANA joined with the American Hospital Association and the American Medical Association to issue an open letter to the public to help prevent the continued spread of COVID-19.
In the July 6 statement, the organizations noted that since states began to reopen, there has been a dramatic increase in COVID-19 cases. “This is why as physicians, nurses, hospital and health system leaders, researchers and public health experts, we are urging the American public to take the simple steps we know will help stop the spread of the virus: wearing a face mask, maintaining physical distancing, and washing hands,” they wrote.
Read more on Nursingworld.org in the ANA News Releases section.