Advice if Looking to Join a Board

If you are a nurse who is looking to broaden his or her resume and become a trustee, too, Campaign for Action has a few tips. The endeavor — which aims to transform care through nursing and is supported by AARP and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation — shared a few tips for nurses in a blog post last week. Joanne Disch, R.N., chair of the board of directors of Wisconsin-based Aurora Health Care, urges her peers to follow some maxims when seeking to become a trustee: (1) it’s now who you know, it’s who knows you; (2) a board is not a board is not a board; and (3) information is power, but relationships are the key. "It’s the perspective nurses bring that is so helpful to boards today,” she says in the post.

Meet Tug, the Robot Nurse

If we are going to begin meaningfully addressing the nursing shortage, maybe robots are part of the answer, according to Wired magazine. The pub recently took a closer look at this concept in action, profiling “Tug,” the robot nurse. In hospitals across the globe, the automaton is helping out by helping to deliver food and drugs and do other mundane tasks. Tug operates in a way similar to self-driving cars, according to Wired, by beaming out lasers that help it to plot its surroundings following a map of the hospital’s layout. And to help ease consumers’ concerns about the robots’ use in care, Tugs aren’t completely autonomous — they need help from human counterparts. “While Tug is designed to not run over toes, humans have to meet it halfway. That means treating these kinds of robots like your grandparents. Seriously. The idea is you help them when they get stuck or, heaven forbid, fall over. And generally speaking, you just get the hell out of their way,” Matt Simon writes for Wired.

The Life of a Nurse in Space

In last week’s Nurse Watch we covered the unusual career of a NASCAR nurse, but Dawn Papandrea takes nursing possibilities to the next level in an article published on Nurse.org that details the career of an aerospace nurse. While there are few openings, Papandrea argues that programs such as Elon Musk’s SpaceX project and the White House’s mission to land on Mars within 20 years may hint at an increase in demand. A space nurse typically provides critical and emergency care during transport for patients who are air-evacuated, and who require specialized skills to deal with decompression sickness, which often comes with flying. These nurses may also be involved in the care of astronauts pre-flight and post-flight and are often on standby during landings. Papandrea suggests the first, and obvious, step, to become a space nurse is to get your RN degree. Other helpful steps include becoming a military flight nurse with the Air Force and becoming involved with organizations such as the Aerospace Medical Association if you are a nurse who wants to work on the final frontier.

Rapid Fire

Here are a few more nurse-related items that caught our eye recently, in rapid fashion:

  • Apparently, no crying baby can resist the charms of Bill Nelson, a nurse with Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, Ill., who has been dubbed as the “baby whisperer,” WGN reports.
  • Patricia Jakel, R.N., a nurse specialist with UCLA, is using her breast cancer diagnosis to help improve the treatment of others facing such diagnoses, curetoday.com reports.
  • School nurses can help to play a key role in the fight to end the opioid epidemic, but they need more education in training, North Carolina Health News reports.
  • And finally, Bismark (N.D.) State College’s nursing program is taking a different path to addressing the RN shortage, by training young kids about the profession in the hopes that they’ll take to it, according to KFYR-TV.