NRS-440VN Topic 4 DQ 1: Example Of Nurse Legislator And Bills Supported,
Choose a legislator on the state or federal level who is also a nurse and discuss the importance of the legislator/nurse’s role as advocate for improving health care delivery., What specific bills has the legislator/nurse sponsored or supported that have influenced health care.
One example of a nurse who has served as a legislator is Donna Christensen, a former Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives from the U.S. Virgin Islands. Christensen, a nurse practitioner by profession, served in Congress from 1997 to 2015 and was the first nurse elected to the U.S. Congress.
As a nurse and a legislator, Christensen played an important role in advocating for improved health care delivery. During her time in Congress, she sponsored and supported a number of bills that aimed to improve access to quality health care, particularly for underserved and marginalized communities.
For example, Christensen was a strong advocate for the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, and worked to ensure that the legislation included provisions to improve access to health care for rural and low-income communities. She also sponsored the National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Expansion and Reauthorization Act of 2010, which aimed to increase the number of health care providers serving in underserved communities by expanding loan repayment programs and scholarship programs.
In addition, Christensen was a strong supporter of mental health initiatives, sponsoring and supporting legislation aimed at improving access to mental health services, reducing the stigma associated with mental illness, and increasing funding for mental health research.
Overall, Christensen’s role as a nurse and a legislator highlights the importance of having nurses represented in the political arena. Nurses have unique insights into the challenges facing the health care system, and their expertise can help inform policy decisions and drive positive change in health care delivery. By advocating for improved access to quality health care and supporting initiatives aimed at improving patient outcomes, nurses like Christensen play a critical role in shaping the future of health care in the United States.