On March 26, 2019, the cartoon Bottom Liners, which reaches many millions of people nationwide, looked like this:
Please join us in asking creators Eric and Bill Teitelbaum, along with Tribune Content Agency, to apologize for this baseless attack on NPs and make amends by running cartoons that reflect reality--that NP care is at least as good as care provided by physicians.
The March 26 Bottom Liners showed a federal lawmaker on the phone assuring someone that “government-run healthcare won’t be that bad…voters get to keep the nurse practitioner of their choice.” One message, clearly, was that nurse practitioners (NPs) are just cut-rate physician substitutes. This is the same disinformation that many physician groups have long been spreading.
The cartoon exploits a false and damaging stereotype of nurse practitioners. Extensive research shows that the care of nurse practitioners (NPs) is at least as good as that of physicians. The vast majority of NPs have at least a masters degree in nursing, and increasingly the doctorate of nursing practice, along with many years of clinical experience.
In fact, expanding access to NP care has been critical to improving outcomes in underserved communities for decades. And the central role of NPs in the future of primary care was confirmed in the landmark Institute of Medicine report The Future of Nursing (2010).
But uninformed stereotyping of NPs has limited their ability to practice to the full extent of their ability, in addition to limiting the funds available for their education, residencies, and clinical practice. Public health research shows that fictional media has a real effect on health care views and actions. We know that the cartoon was a "joke," but jokes are a common delivery method for harmful messaging about targeted groups, including nurses. For example, studies show that disparagement humor directed at women increases acceptance of discrimination against them, normalizing it. Few people would accept "just joking" as an excuse for stereotyping of other groups.
Please ask Eric & Bill Teitelbaum and the Tribune company to make amends with a public apology and by working to educate the public about the true value of NP care. One good way to do that would be to print cartoons or other influential media depicting nurse practitioners as qualified, life-saving health professionals. The Truth About Nursing would be happy to assist them. And going forward, please ask them to avoid contributing to damaging stereotypes that undermine the efforts of nurses to get the resources they need to save lives.
Thank you for joining the effort to increase public understanding of nursing!
Sandy Summers to speak at Widener University in May
May 16, 2019 - Truth About Nursing director Sandy Summers is thrilled to be set to speak at the Nightingale ceremony for graduating seniors of the Widener University School of Nursing! It will be held at The Springfield Country Club (400 W Sproul Rd, Springfield, PA 19064) at noon on Thursday, May 16. Widener is located in Chester, Pennsylvania.
Having an event? Book Sandy today!
Let Sandy Summers empower your nurses and help them fully embrace their autonomy!
Patients deserve better protection. Let Sandy help your nurses and students fully embrace their autonomy to strengthen nursing care, reduce errors and improve care! Sandy recently spoke in Washington DC, Manitoba and Vancouver, and gave the graduation speech at Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing. She speaks widely to a variety of international nursing groups. Click here to see details and book her today!
March 23, 2019 – Today Valencia College nursing professor Diane Reed, RN, PhD, hosted the Truth's executive director on"The Nurses ROCK! Show". The show is now available on MixLR. We thank Dr. Reed for having Sandy on her show, and for providing strong insights and outreach for our messages about nursing in the media!
Many nursing professors rely on the extensive and varied materials on the Truth's website to help their students engage with critical issues nurses will face in the future, from their public image to key aspects of nursing education, practice, and advocacy. Since 2001, we have explored and analyzed how the global media and society in general has seen the nursing profession. Join your colleagues and use this material to help plan your curriculum! Please consider some of these ideas...
Imagine a world where nurses were fully empowered to protect patients
Get an author-signed copy of Saving Lives for you or a friend
Saving Lives is the transformative book acclaimed by nurses, nursing leaders, scholars, and the media. It can help your friends, colleagues, and students be the strong nurses our profession needs to protect patients from errors, injuries, and disease. See praise for Saving Lives: Why the Media's Portrayal of Nursing Puts Us All at Risk by leaders in nursing and the media as well as the awards it has earned, including three Book of the Year awards from the American Journal of Nursing and an award from Sigma Theta Tau, the International Honor Society of Nursing. The updated second edition from Oxford University Press is now available! All donations and royalties go directly to support The Truth About Nursing, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Thank you for your support!
New international text Nurses and Nursing leads off with chapter by Truth leaders
The exciting new textbook Nurses and Nursing: The Person and the Profession includes a chapter on nursing's image by Truth leaders Sandy Summers and Harry Jacobs Summers. Edited by Padraig O Luanaigh, RN, EdD, the thought-provoking new textbook from Routledge "draws on international contributors with a range of backgrounds to explore, engage with and challenge readers in understanding the many aspects and elements that inform and influence contemporary nursing practice." Our chapter is "Nursing's public image: Toward a professional future." We thank Dr. Luanaigh for the opportunity to be a part of this important new project. Please consider this book for your classes in professionalism, nursing and society, and nursing leadership. Click here to request a free copy for review now! See more about the book here...