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There are many reasons nurses deserve our appreciation – here are some of them.

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Nurses have always been the frontline workers in health care. They’re the first ones we see when we visit a doctor’s office and they’re the ones who take care of us for hours on end when we’re in the hospital. Throughout the pandemic, these dedicated women and men have had to step up even more – enduring long grueling shifts with fewer days off and dealing with untold suffering and uncertainty. Plus, they’re doing it all while covered from head to toe in restrictive personal protective equipment (PPE) the entire day.

Here are just 7 of the thousands of reasons nurses deserve our appreciation:

    1. Nurses have a wide range of medical and people skills. Nurses know how to plump a pillow just right and how to encourage a reluctant patient to get up to walk the halls after surgery. But they also know how to administer IVs and medicines, check vital signs, recognize concerning symptoms and much more. They are often the people most in tune to a patient’s health condition and whether or not it is improving.
    2. Nurses truly listen and answer our questions. While doing their daily rounds, doctors stop into each room for a few minutes to check on patients and update instructions for the nursing staff. The rest of the time, it’s the nurses that are fully present for the patients, responding quickly to every push of the call button and answering any other questions they might have.
    3. Nurses are effective patient advocates. Nurses aren’t afraid to speak up on behalf of their patients – to doctors and hospital administration, and also to well-meaning family members or friends who keep patients up past visiting hours.
    4. Nurses work marathon shifts with little downtime. Most nurses in hospital settings work 10- or 12-hour shifts for days in a row. Tasked with caring for several patients at once, they move quickly from room to room, barely having a chance to sit down and take a breath.
    5. Nurses are on their feet all day long. No wonder they have to wear special shoes! Several studies have reported that nurses can walk a total of 4-5 miles or more in a single shift, while many of us rarely walk more than a mile in an entire day.
    6. Nurses work very hard to get to where they are. Becoming a nurse isn’t easy. It takes years of schooling and intensive clinical training, not to mention how hard they work once their training is complete. Their training is never really finished, as they are always learning new skills and keeping up-to-date with new equipment and revised regulations.
    7. Nurses truly care. To most nurses, what they do is more than just a job. Nurses really care about their patients, are rooting for them to get better and feel their pain when they don’t. Nurses are able to do the amazing work they do because of the human connection they have with their patients.

For all the reasons above, and for many more that aren’t listed here, nurses deserve our respect, appreciation and admiration. The next time you are taken care of by a nurse, don’t forget to say thank you!

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Date Last Reviewed: March 15, 2021

Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor

Medical Review: Perry Pitkow, MD

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