AACN Initiative Gives Nurses a Voice Through Voting

February 26, 2020 by Alec Stone MA, MPA, Former ONS Director of Government Affairs and Advocacy
alec stone
Alec Stone MA, MPA, ONS Public Affairs Director

During the Year of the Nurse (https://voice.ons.org/news-and-views/every-year-is-the-year-of-the-nurse), many organizations are finding ways to promote and champion the expertise and experiences (https://www.ons.org/podcasts/episode-90-year-nurse) that make up the most trusted profession in the United States (https://news.gallup.com/poll/274673/nurses-continue-rate-highest-honesty-ethics.aspx). The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) is focusing on ways nurses will affect the upcoming presidential election, ensuring nursing professionals are registered, educated, and ready to vote in 2020.

Through the Nursing Voices, Nursing Votes campaign (https://www.aacnnursing.org/Policy-Advocacy/Get-Involved/Nursing-Voices-Nursing-Votes)—a nonpartisan initiative to encourage nurses to make their voices heard at the polls—AACN is connecting educators, administrators, students, and practicing clinicians with the resources and information they need to make informed voting decisions.

 "Amplifying nursing's voice, at all levels of government, is essential and begins with registering to vote," Ann Cary, PhD, MPH, RN, FNAP, FAAN, chair of the AACN board of directors, said. “AACN is proud to bring back the Nursing Voices, Nursing Votes initiative, which gives AACN members the resources and information needed to cast their ballots in the 2020 elections.”

The initiative provides materials about upcoming primary dates, registration deadlines, and absentee ballots, as well as a presidential election day countdown. Information about state-focused voting resources is also available to help nurses understand their local election choices. At all levels of government, nurses can make a huge impact for their practice, patients, and the profession as a whole (https://voice.ons.org/stories/health-policy-begins-with-you-educate-your-representatives-in-cancer-care).

Want to Drive Change for Patients With Cancer?

Advocacy is vital to advancing care for patients with cancer. Nurses have a unique perspective and experience with patient care and serve as excellent communicators on the healthcare team. ONS advocates are liaisons and translators for elected officials, speaking truth to power in legislatures and congressional offices around the country (https://voice.ons.org/stories/oncology-nurse-educates-congressional-staff-about-the-importance-of-palliative-hospice-care).

Nurse advocates can inform important health policy conversations, drawing attention to issues in cancer nursing, research, and patient-centered care. Learn about the ways you can help raise patient and provider voices to make a difference (https://www.ons.org/make-difference) at the state, local, and federal levels.

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