A Letter to Nurses

stethescope pic

By now the ridiculous comments from the hosts of The View have been chewed, swallowed, and barfed out like the garbage they are.  Miss Colorado spoke about her experience being “just a nurse” and how an Alzheimer patient helped her to realize the importance of her work.  The View managed to mock her (probably jealous of her brains), and the outcry was more than impressive.  The public poured out their support for nurses.  Social media made it very clear that mocking nurses would not be tolerated.  And I joined in.  There were YouTube rebuttals and new memes created that were both thoughtful and hilarious.  I watched as my Facebook stream filled with nursing friends posing in scrubs with a stethoscope placed around their necks.  It was the perfect response to ward off ignorance about the profession and remind the public of the care nurses provide.

And yet I can’t help feeling a little disappointed.  A little betrayed.  Not by my nursing friends but by the nursing profession.  Physician Assistants are frequently misrepresented in media and the work that we do is often belittled.  Our work is viewed as a “stepping stone” to be fulfilled only after we complete medical school.  We get labeled as assistants that deliver coffee and can only handle scut work.  Where was the support from the nursing community when we were getting slandered?  Almost every day I hear stories from colleagues about how the lack of an MD behind their name causes patients to question them.  But we do not have the numbers or the lobbying power to put up much of a fight.  Our PR department doesn’t have much oomf yet so any strong statements we try to make are limited compared to the large nursing force.  Our field has only been around for 50 years so we are kind of the new guys on the block.  When we’ve been thrown to the wolves on many occasions all I heard from the nursing community was …..crickets.

I think that as healthcare professionals we should all be respected.  We made it through difficult training and clinicals. We’ve weathered traumatic patient encounters and watched death whisk people away.  I guess all I’m asking is for you guys to have our backs, like we have yours. 

I can educate patients until I am blue in the face about the scope of a PA. I can work my hardest to give quality care to the American public. My hard work would be so much more fruitful if the PA profession had more support from the nursing community.  When you hear a ridiculous characterization of a PA, call it out for the BS it is.  When it is National PA Week, maybe give it a brief spot on your Facebook page.  When you get wind of The View mocking the PA profession, be almost as mad as when they mocked your profession.  ‘Cause right now we are the underdogs;  Physician Assistants need a little support to make our profession better understood.  As the PA profession continues to be the bridge the between people and access to healthcare, spreading understanding of what we do will only benefit patients.  And I know the heart of nursing will always be patient care.  That’s my heart as well.


8 Comments Add yours

  1. Sheri jarman says:

    Sad that your nurses do not “have your back”. In our clinic we have nothing but respect for all mid levels! My children see a CPNP we LOVE and say she could put do an MD any day! I have to agree with you tho! I am a CMA who unfortunately has just about the same amount of schooling as an LPN and who works side by side with them doing the same job but get labeled as an assistant not a nurse because of the board of nursing! I agree that nurses have worked hard for their degree and they have earned the title but I just as good as any LPN 🙂


    1. rocketdow says:

      My nurses are great as well! I do feel supported at my place of work. Where I think we need the support is in the public arena. And this could be a message for all healthcare professionals. I have your back too!


  2. s says:

    I see it this way, what comes around, goes around. She isn’t funny at all. She laughs at people all the time at HER expense. Here is another example the way Joy Behar makes fun of people all the time. Perfect example, https://celiac.org/blog/2015/01/22/listen-joy-behar. Shame on her. She needs to be Fired (that is with a capital ‘F’). If that was any of us, we would be asked to leave immediately, but because she a ‘star’ and brings in ratings which brings money to the show, she will stay (but without me watching. Not that I was watching before.) HAHAAHA Who’s laughing now?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. rocketdow says:

      I read the article and had no idea she was so rude. Now I will have another reason to not watch The View.


  3. adb9302 says:

    It would be nice to hear some specific examples of of nursing not “having your back”. I’ve personally never seen an example where the nursing profession would have helped PA’s but chose not to, or an individual nurse could have helped an individual PA and chose not to.

    Also, if it has happened, keep in mind the politics that exist between medicine and the advanced practice-nursing lobby. It gets messy sometimes, and PA’s may be viewed as being “on the side of” the MD’s when political conflicts arise.

    It sounds like PA’s are dealing with similar issues that nurses have always dealt with.


    1. rocketdow says:

      This is certainly not about the working relationships most of us have with nurses. I think in my own experience PAs and nurses make a great team in the workplace. The issue I have is in the public arena. One wrong step by a public figure and the whole country comes together to squash them. So many people that are in the medical field including PAs and MDs came and stood with nurses. When this type of issue comes up for PAs there is very little support from the nursing world.


  4. s says:

    She is brilliant! Now EVERYONE is talking about ‘THE VIEW’. Because of what transpired has made HER even MORE well known, and all for a good cause. It’s nice that her dignity has gotten the recognition she deserves. Had she won the pageant, all of this would have been a flight by the night episode.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. s says:

    PS Now, we need to do the same for PAs. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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