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Maryland Nurses Saluted for National Nurses Week

May 9, 2012

BETHESDA, Md. - National Nurses Week is giving nurses in Maryland and across America the opportunity to reflect on their profession, their patients and what it will take to improve the health of the nation.

Before you can see the doctor, you usually see a nurse first. Nurses often are the primary point of contact in the health-care system.

Maryland registered nurse Linda Boch says nurses are a voice for patients when they can't speak up for themselves.

"Nurses Week reminds us that together we can advocate stronger and more unified on behalf of our patients."

Boch also is a member of the Nurse Alliance of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), and says that advocacy extends to the Affordable Care Act these days. The alliance speaks in support of the law, crediting it with putting patients first.

According to a 2011 Gallup poll, nursing was rated the most trusted profession out of 21
professions listed, including doctors, teachers and clergy.

Those who go into nursing commonly say they do it because they want to help people, and Boch says her patients know she's fighting for them.

"That includes fighting for the Affordable Care Act, to make sure that it stays in place, and even gets better."

National Nurses Week is celebrated May 6-12 each year, coinciding with the birthday
of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing.

Deb Courson Smith, Public News Service - MD