At the American Nurses Association's (ANA) annual meeting in June, nearly 600
nurse leaders passed several resolutions, including one that would strengthen
registered nurses' ability to respond quickly in the event of terrorist attacks
and disasters and another that would aid in the retention of older, experienced
"Whenever and wherever disasters have struck, registered nurses have always
responded selflessly by lending their skills, time and expertise to help victims
and their families," said former ANA President Mary Foley, MS, RN. "By passing
this resolution, ANA and its 54 member organizations will be able to create a
more coordinated, efficient disaster response that will help all Americans in
need of emergency care, preventive care or information vital to their continued
health and well-being."
The resolution was brought before the ANA’s house of delegates by five state
nurses associations that became key information centers for nurses who wanted to
help following the events of Sept. 11, last fall's anthrax attacks, the 1995
Oklahoma City bombing and the 1992 World Trade Center bombing.
In part, it calls for ANA to lead national nursing organizations in
developing the profession's response to disaster events; work with its member
organizations to ensure registered nurses are involved in planning and
implementing disaster preparedness initiatives at the local, state and national
levels. The resolution also calls for promoting public education about disaster
preparedness and response.
In approving another resolution, nurse leaders called for developing and
promoting strategies that support the choice of the older, experienced nurse to
continue practice; heighten awareness of the critical need for these nurses to
remain core contributing professionals beyond retirement if they so choose. The
resolution also calls for the monitoring of issues associated with the aging of
the American workforce.
Among other resolutions, the delegates passed a measure to promote nurses'
access to programs that offer comprehensive monitoring and support services to
those with addictions or psychiatric disorders instead of making them face
Delegates also voiced their support for a strong U.S. position in the
negotiations of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, the World Health
Organization's effort to promote a coordinated international response regarding
tobacco marketing and use. That position would include restrictions on
second-hand smoke in enclosed public and private workplaces and on public
transportation, and a prohibition on misleading terms on cigarette packaging,
among other key concerns.
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