As co-chairs of the Senate Nursing Caucus, Senators Roger Wicker and Jeff Merkley introduced a bipartisan Senate resolution designating May 6 – 12, 2020, as National Nurses Week.
The Senators stated in a news release that as nurses risk their lives treating more than one million coronavirus patients across America in the midst of a global pandemic, the resolution honors the important contributions of America’s nurses in providing safe, high-quality health care, and the invaluable role that nurses play in patient care and support.
“Nurses are heroes because of their courage and commitment to care even during extreme circumstances,” Wicker said. “Long before the current pandemic began, nurses in Mississippi and across the country have shown they are willing to risk their own health and safety to help others. Our resolution reflects the gratitude of all Americans for these health-care professionals.”
“As the husband of a nurse, I’ve seen close-up how difficult their jobs are and how important they are to patients,” Merkley said. “Mary, like nurses across Oregon and across the country, continues to serve, even with the added stress and fear of coronavirus. Nurses support and advocate for patients at some of the most difficult moments of their lives. This week, let’s all take a moment to appreciate and celebrate the nurses in our communities.”
Nurses represent the single largest profession in the health-care field, with an estimated four million registered nurses in the United States. While many Americans have followed stay-at-home orders to help curb the spread of the coronavirus, nurses have continued to care for patients.
The Senators went on to say that the resolution recognizes the importance of nurses in providing quality care, conducting medical research, tailoring care to each community and individual needs, eliminating public health disparities, promoting healthy lifestyles, and more.
The resolution also recognizes the need to strengthen nursing workforce development and education, and calls upon all Americans to recognize National Nurses Week this year.
Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith is a co-sponsor of the resolution. Others include Tom Udall, D-N.M., James Inhofe, R-Okla., Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., Tom Cotton, R-Ark., Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., Richard Burr, R-N.C., Gary Peters, D-Mich., Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., John Boozman, R-Ark., Catherine Cortez Masto, D-Nev., John Hoeven, R-N.D., Kamala Harris, R-Calif., Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., Martha McSally, R-Ariz., Jacky Rosen, D-Nev., and Steve Daines, R-Mont.
A copy of the full resolution can be found here.