Tuesday, May 9, 2023

Washington, D.C. – Oregon’s U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley and Mississippi’s U.S. Senator Roger Wicker teamed up with Representatives Dave Joyce (R-OH-14), Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR-01), Jen Kiggans (R-VA-02), and Lauren Underwood (D-IL-14) to introduce a bipartisan, bicameral resolution recognizing National Nurses Week.

The resolution honors and celebrates the important contributions of America’s nurses to safe, high-quality care and the invaluable role that nurses play in patient care every day—and particularly in treating injured and sickpatients during wartime, natural disasters, and public health emergencies.  

“As the husband of a nurse, I’ve seen close-up how difficult nurses’ jobs are and how important they are to patients,” said Senator Merkley, Co-Chair of the Senate Nursing Caucus. “Nurses in every corner of Oregon and all across the country provide crucial care, support, and advocacy for their patients and families during some of their most difficult moments. This week, let’s all take a moment to appreciate and celebrate the nurses in our communities for their dedication and care, and recommit ourselves to doing all we can to provide them with the support they need to keep saving lives.”

“Nurses are integral to our nation’s health care system,” said Senator Wicker, Co-Chair of the Senate Nursing Caucus. “They ensure patients receive timely and quality care, and their dedication is unmatched.  Our country needs more of these heroes, and I hope young people will consider joining the nursing profession.  This resolution is a small token of our gratitude for their service.”

“Nurses are among the most trusted and selfless healthcare professionals in America,” said Congressman Dave Joyce, Co-Chair of the Congressional Nursing Caucus. “As the husband of a nurse and Co-Chair of the Congressional Nursing Caucus, I know the amount of dedication and hard work nurses put into their daily task of caring for their patients. I am proud to introduce this resolution to continue to advocate for America’s nursing workforce and celebrate their accomplishments.”

“National Nurses Week is an opportunity to show our deep gratitude to nurses for their tireless service and to recognize that they are the backbone of our health care system,” said Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici, Co-Chair of the Congressional Nursing Caucus. “We must also acknowledge that we need to do more to support nurses throughout the year and create more paths for people to enter the nursing field. I’m committed to doing all I can to support our nurses.”

“Across the country, nurses are on the frontlines of healthcare,” said Congresswoman Jen Kiggans, Congressional Nursing Caucus Vice Chair. “As a primary care geriatric nurse practitioner, I had the honor of caring for our Greatest Generation and their families. I’m proud to formally recognize National Nurses Week and will continue be a voice for our nursing workforce as a member of Congress!”

“As one of three nurses in Congress, I’m thrilled to help introduce this resolution and recognize nurses for all they do to care for their communities and protect public health,” said Congresswoman Lauren Underwood, Congressional Nursing Caucus Vice Chair. “Every day, nurses are providing high-quality clinical care, engaging in policy advocacy, and leading in their communities. National Nurses Week is an opportunity to show our thanks and recognition. I look forward to continuing my work to support nurses at every stage of their education, training, and careers.”

Nurses represent the single largest component of the health care professions, with an estimated 4.5 million registered nurses in the United States. Our country needs nurses, yet the reality of our nursing workforce demands our immediate attention and appreciation. With nearly a third of the nation’s nursing workforce stating they plan on leaving the profession, today’s resolution comes at a critical time and recognizes the importance of nurses in providing quality care, conducting medical research, tailoring care to each community and individual, eliminating public health disparities, promoting healthy lifestyles, and more. 

The resolution recognizes the need to strengthen nursing workforce development and education, and calls upon all Americans to recognize and celebrate National Nurses Week this year, and to support our nursing workforce today and every day.

In addition to Merkley and Wicker, this resolution is also cosponsored by Senators John Barrasso (R-WY), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Katie Britt (R-AL), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Steve Daines (R-MT), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), John Fetterman (D-PA), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), John Hickenlooper (D-CO), John Hoeven (R-ND), Ben Luján (D-NM), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Alex Padilla (D-CA), Gary Peters (D-MI), Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ), Tina Smith (D-MN), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), and Peter Welch (D-VT).

In addition to Joyce, Bonamici, Kiggans, and Underwood, this resolution is also cosponsored by Representatives Donald Payne (D-NJ-10), Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ-07), Stephen Lynch (D-MA-08), Lisa Blunt-Rochester (D-DE), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA-01), Brian Higgins (D-NY, 26), Steve Cohen (D-TN-09), Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO-05), Bill Pascrell (D-NJ-09), and Kelly Armstrong (R-ND).

Full text of the resolution can be found here.