Fighting Against Racism in Nursing Will Require Both Organization and Personal Commitments, Nurse Leaders Say

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Racial bias continues to impact nurses at all levels, so work must be done to make the healthcare setting more inclusive and diverse. Tipton Health Communications recently held a second part to its insightful webinar, “A Discussion on Race, Inclusive Practice and Nursing.” The thoughtful continued conversation was moderated by a nationally recognized nursing executive and featured the presidents of the American Nurses Association (ANA), the National Black Nurses Association (NBNA) and the National Association of Hispanic Nurses (NAHN).

There is still much work to be done to make hospitals and health systems more inclusive for nursing staff. That was the message from a powerhouse team of healthcare experts who shared their insights about the state of race and inclusivity in the nursing profession during Tipton Health Communications’ July 28 webinar, “A Discussion on Race, Inclusive Practice and Nursing.”

Ena Williams, senior vice president and chief nursing officer at Yale New Haven Hospital, served as moderator and was joined by Ernest Grant, PhD, RN, FAAN, president of the American Nurses Association. Martha A. Dawson, DNP, RN, FACHE, president of the National Black Nurses Association; and Alana Cueto MSN, RN, CNL, president of the National Association of Hispanic Nurses (NAHN).

“Leaders have the power in their hands,” Williams said. “You can be the change, whether you’re a CNO or the manager of a unit. These experiences may be uncomfortable, but you have to lean in and change the healthcare profession.”

The strategies laid out included providing sponsorship of novice nurses, creating avenues for open discussion, reviewing workplace policies and offering diversity training. The panelists also shared tips on how to respond to racial bias constructively as a minority nurse to help educate and build understanding with non-minority nurses.

“The best way to respond constructively is to know yourself–understand how you’re going to control and react to a situation,” said Dr. Dawson. “In situations where I’ve been called a slur or discriminated against, I had to take the power back and decide not to let them influence my emotions. I respond by saying, ‘Thank you. So many of my ancestors and forefathers gave up their lives for me not to have to respond to you. I want you to know that I’m very proud of that.’”

For more information on this webinar and the experts who weighed in, please visit tiptonhealth.com/webinars. Tipton Health encourages all healthcare leaders to view the full conversation.

About Tipton Health Communications

Tipton Health Communications is a leading provider of executive nurse consulting and mentoring; nursing excellence program development; and Magnet®, Pathway to Excellence® and Practice Transition Accreditation Program™ consulting support to the nation’s hospital and healthcare systems. In addition, Tipton Health supports clients nationwide with award-winning communications services, including employee communications, human resources communications, public relations, marketing communications, intranet and Internet design, graphic design, and strategic communications. For more information, please visit tiptonhealth.com.

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Julia Bosso
@TiptonCom
since: 11/2008
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