The American Nurses Association (ANA) describes nursing as “an art and a science;” it takes a unique blend of dedication, compassion, and understanding to comfort the sick and make people feel good when they’re ill or in pain. Anyone who’s spent time in the hospital can recognize the special role nurses play for their patients. National Nurses Week, celebrated May 6 through Florence Nightingale’s birthday on May 12, is meant to show appreciation for these angels of the health care world.
Nurses play such an important role in our society that the State House features “Nurses Hall” in honor of the Civil War Army Nurses Memorial statue that was erected there in 1914. Nurses Hall was originally called Senate Staircase Hall since it contains one of two grand stairways which lead to the legislative chambers. After the memorial statue was installed, it began to be known as Nurses Hall but wasn’t officially renamed until an act of legislature in 1985. Take a virtual tour of the State House to see this beautiful room.
Are you considering joining the profession?
Massachusetts requires the completion of collegiate courses of study in nursing as well as the successful completion of nationwide standardized tests for nurses. The Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) website outlines board-approved practical and registered nurse education programs, as well as information on obtaining a nursing license. Nurses and other health professionals, who choose to work at an approved health care organization for two years, may be eligible for the Massachusetts Loan Repayment Program. Read about one nurse practitioner’s experience with this program in this blog post from the Department of Public Health.
Nurses (and doctors) want you to be as healthy and happy as possible, so don’t be afraid to ask them the tough questions. Use these tips on how to talk to your doctor or nurse to help you get started, and next time you have an appointment, remember how important your nurse is, give them a big smile and thank them for the hard work they do each day!
For additional information on nursing in Massachusetts, visit Mass.gov.