Joining Forces with the First Lady

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Hopkins Nursing Supports Veterans and Families

IOM Recommendation 2Johns Hopkins has joined more than 500 nursing schools committed to preparing our nation’s three million nurses to meet the unique health needs of service members, veterans, and their families.

“Whether we’re in a hospital, a doctor’s office, or a community health center, nurses are often the first people we see when we walk through the door. Because of their expertise, they are trusted to be the front line of America’s health care system,” says First Lady Michelle Obama. “That’s why Jill [Biden] and I knew we could turn to America’s nurses and nursing students to help our veterans and military families get the world-class care that they’ve earned.”

Although healthcare professionals within the Veterans Affairs (VA) system have received extensive training in issues such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), the majority of veterans seek care outside of the VA system. Therefore all of America’s nurses must understand the needs of those who have served.

First Lady Michelle Obama shakes hands after announcing a major initiative to ensure our nation’s nurses are prepared to help meet the unique health needs of service members, veterans, and their families.

Led by the American Nurses Association, the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners, the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, and the National League for Nursing, in coordination with the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Defense, nursing organizations and schools have committed to educating current and future nurses on how to recognize and care for veterans impacted by PTSD, TBI, depression, and other combat-related issues, in ways appropriate to each nurse’s practice setting. They will also work to disseminate effective models for care and to share the most up-to-date information on these conditions across academic and practice settings.

“Veterans who have experienced combat bring a new set of challenges to the table,” notes Hopkins Nursing Dean Martha N. Hill, PhD, RN. “Our faculty and students are researching the impact of these post-combat-related issues both on veterans and their families, with the goal of improving the overall quality of life.”

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