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Pandemic, political turmoil, wildfires, evacuations, surging infections and loss in both of our states. No one has been immune to 2020 and the impact it has had on our lives both personally and professionally. 2020 began as a celebration of the “Year of the Nurse”. The convergence of these events is a poignant reminder of nurses’ vital role in caring for patients, comforting families and protecting the health of the community.
As we cross over into 2021, it is critical to recognize the importance and value of nursing. We face the possibility of a nursing shortage exceeding prior forecasts. Our continued focus on academic/practice partnerships, nursing pipeline development and opportunities to accelerate nursing education will be among the priorities for this year.
Nursing leadership will be paramount in developing our teams, creating a new generation of leaders and supporting and lifting each other as we (hopefully) find our way navigating out of the pandemic.
Application of our learnings from this year has offered us new ways to connect, learn, and support one another. As the vaccine provides us with new hope, it also reminds us that some day soon we can come together as a community to share our collective learnings and build on these as nursing leaders.
Kelly Espinoza, PhD, RN
Vice President & Chief Nursing Officer - Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center
President - Northwest Organization of Nurse Leaders