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Senator LEHMAN. So that the increase in the number of practical nurses that might be trained and other auxiliary personnel would in no way compete with the graduate nurses.
Mrs. PATTERSON. Oh, no, sir, that is quite true.
Mrs. PATTERSON. That is quite true, and I think it is necessary to have both. I see no conflict there, no conflict in the training program.
Senator LEHMAN. Thank you.
Chairman Hill. And for this very excellent statement, Mrs. Patterson.
It is certainly a pleasure.
Now Mr. A. A. Rosser: Mr. Rosser is administrator of the GlynnBrunswick Memorial Hospital, Brunswick, Ga. Glad to have you here, Mr. Rosser. You may proceed in your own way. STATEMENT OF ALDINE A. ROSSER, ADMINISTRATOR, GLYNN
BRUNSWICK MEMORIAL HOSPITAL, BRUNSWICK, GA. Mr. ROSSER. Mr. Chairman, and members of the committee, I am Aldine A. Rosser, administrator of the Glynn-Brunswick Memorial Hospital, Brunswick, Ga., immediate past president of the Georgia Hospital Association, trustee of the Southeastern Hospital Asociation, and member of the advisory board to Practical Nurses Examiners of the State of Georgia.
On behalf of the Georgia Hospital Association, the Practical Nurses Advisory Board, and as a matter of public interest, I request support for S. 929 by Messrs. Hill, Murray, Neely, Lehman, and McNamara, which proposes Federal aid for the training of practical nurses and auxiliary hospital personnel.
Being reminded that there is an acute shortage of registered nurses, I request this support for the following reasons:
1. To provide the youth of low-income families the opportunity of preparing themselves with a vocation that enables them to serve others and at the same time provide for themselves a means of selfsupport in a respected vocation.
2. To provide hospitals with trained personnel.
3. To relieve the registered nurses of routine bedside nursing duties, especially in small hospitals that are unable to secure an adequate number of registered nurses.
4. To provide adequate personnel for bedside care of convalescent and aged patients, in homes and nursing institutions.
5. To provide a training program that can be carried out in hospitals of 50 to 100 beds, that are financially unable to provide this needed training program.
6. To raise the standard of auxiliary personnel.
In hospitals and communities where practical nurses are trained and used the results have been most gratifying. They conduct themselves in a professional manner and are well aware of their limitations. They have relieved the load of routine duties of registered nurses, enabling the registered nurse to spend more time with the acutely ill patients and thus provide better nursing service to all patients. The acute shortage of registered nurses has made us aware of the fact that a large percentage of the registered nurse's duties can be performed adequately by trained practical nurses. This gives the practical nurse a feeling of security, with pride in her duties and responsibilities, and this, in turn, makes them better citizens. Knowing that they are charged with responsibility and that they are aiding people in distress creates confidence.
Should we be plunged into another war, it is these people who will be on the frontlines offering first aid and care, saving many American lives. This was borne out by the auxiliary program conducted by the armed services in World War II. Therefore, you might say that these people are being made better and more useful citizens and at the same time being trained for a program of national disaster.
Practically all communities need additional nurses. There are too few professional nurses with degrees and diplomas to meet the requirements of practicing physicians and the general public. This situation offers to competent licensed practical nurses the assurance of constant employment in their vocation under unusually favorable conditions.
Practical nurses are needed in the following places: General hospitals, chronic hospitals, children's hospitals, children's homes, infirmaries, nursing homes, physicians' offices, dentists' offices, private homes, industrial plants, health departments.
I urge that you give this bill serious consideration and earnestly solicit your support for its passage.
Chairman HILL. Any questions?
Chairman HILL. Mr. Rosser, your statement dovetails and fits in and complements the statement of Mrs. Patterson. It is a splendid statement and most helpful to us. We deeply appreciate your coming here and giving
us that statement this morning. Thank you very much. Mr. ROSSER. Thank you, sir.
Chairman Hill. Miss Hilda Torrop, executive director of the National Association for Practical Nurse Education, New York City.
STATEMENT OF MISS HILDA TORROP, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR,
NATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR PRACTICAL NURSE EDUCATION
Miss TORROP. I would like to ask the privilege of speaking from 17 years of experience in this field of practical nurse education and to file a prepared statement with you.
Chairman Hill. We will be happy to have you do so.
Miss TORROP. During these 17 years, the 8 schools with which we first started to work we have seen grow to 400. We have seen the practical nurse accepted as one answer to the nationwide shortage of nursing care.
We find that community groups everywhere nod understandingly when we state that the value of the trained practical nurse lies in the fact that she accepts patient care as an all-time career. We think that the value of the practical nurse ties itself up in that kind of a package.
But perhaps there is no other single health service so critically needed as bedside nursing service at the present time.
As you gentlemen know, there are over 27 million citizens in this country with chronic or long-extended convalescences. I have in mind such patients as our polio, our arthritic, our heart, our cancer, and our mental patients.
Our experts on chronic illness estimate that we need a standing army of 200,000 trained practical nurses. We are at the present moment graduating approximately 12,000 throughout the country from the 400 schools of practical nursing. We believe that the potential
recruitment reservoir for the schools for practical nursing is deep. From 25 to 40 percent of young people enrolled in high schools drop out before graduation.
Schools of practical nursing do not demand graduates of high schools. The older women need to become wage-earners after the age of 35, or who are free for the first time to take up a nursing career they wanted when they were younger turn out to be successful
students. We do not find one director of a school for practical nursing who does not voluntarily testify to the excellent services given by the older women who go into practical nursing.
Practical nurses are needed in hospitals of all types, in patients' homes, with visiting nurses associations, among other opportunities that are open to them at the present moment.
In an office like ours, calls pour in that have a particular poignancy because we are not a placement agency and therefore we serve somewhat as a court of last resort, and I have very much in mind the man who visited us yesterday, whose wife has had a cerebral accident and is partly paralyzed. He said, “If I am able to work in the daytime, I could earn enough to keep our small home together. If you can only find me a nurse who can take care of her then, I will take care of her at night," and with his hand on the doorknob as he left, he said, “Do find me someone to keep us together. I love her so much.”
That kind of call, like the daughter who is setting her alarm clock at hourly intervals all night to get up and care for the arthritic mother, these are cases that do not make the headlines, but they are the citizens whose need is found up and down the streets of the city, and whose need we feel is preculiarly poignant. Therefore, the need for home nursing experience for the practical nurse while she is still a student is manifest. More schools are needed.
Chairman Hill. The need is a daily need, it is a constant need, isn't that right?
Miss TORROP. It is a constant need. And it is in every angle, in the home and in the hospitals of the country. We need students, we need teachers, we need equipment, we need schools, and of course we feel that additional Federal aid would make many of these things possible.
Senator LEHMAN. It won't discourage, as is claimed, local initiative, will it?
Miss TORROP. I hope not, sir. I don't believe there is any chance of that.
Senator LEHMAN. I know.
Miss TORROP. There is plenty of room for all the local initiative that we can stir up.
Senator LEHMAN. Don't you think the added interest shown by the Federal Government would stimulate interest and support locally
Miss TORROP. I feel quite sure that it will, because there is a great deal of current interest, but also a companion frustration because there is not enough of the wherewithal to make things move a little more rapidly than they are moving at the present moment.
Senator LEHMAN. How long have practical nurses been licensed in New York, do you know?
Miss TORROP. Since 1938.
Miss TORROP. A lot of opposition and of course there is a lot of opposition here and there now, but nothing like what there was then, Governor Lehman.
Senator LEHMAN. Thank you.
Miss TORROP. We have every hope that standards will be established in the States that will assure a practitioner that is able to give the quality and quantity of service that the hospitals, than the doctors, and the patients need, and this, Senator, is an extremely important point.
We feel, as an organization, sorry that S. 929 does not provide aid for all schools that qualify as superior schools of practical nursing. A large number of the best schools in the country are hospital-sponsored schools that very much need the same aid as the schools will get that are under vocational education.
Scholarships are needed to prepare professional nurses to teach practical nursing and this is not to be confused with workshops that teach them how to be more expert in the field of adult education. Grants-in-aid are very much needed for students who qualify in every respect except being financially able to take the 1-year course.
We hope very much that the bill will receive favorable hearing and that some way may be found to make the aid flexible enough to help all
approved schools of practical nursing. Thank you.
Chairman Hill. Well, you have spoken to us, I would say, out of your experience and also out of your heart and we want to thank you and express to you our deep appreciation.
Miss TORROP. Thank you, Senator Hill.
Miss Agnes Olson, president of the American Nurses' Association of New York. Miss Olson?
Miss OLSON. Senator Hill
Miss Olson. I would like to say here that we have with us Miss Carroll, who is our staff member, and Miss Helen Marchant, who is a member of our association and currently directing a State program for practical-nurse preparation in the State of Connecticut.
Chairman Hill. Good, nice to have all of you.
STATEMENT OF MISS AGNES OLSON, PRESIDENT, AMERICAN
NURSES' ASSOCIATION, NEW YORK CITY, ACCOMPANIED BY MISS MARGARET CARROLL AND MISS HELEN MARCHANT
Miss Olson. I would like very much to read the statement that we have prepared and to have it inserted in the record, if I may.
The American Nurses' Association, of which I am the president, is a national organization of over 175,000 registered professional nurses from all fields of nursing practice and nursing education, and with constituent associations in 53 States and Territories. The overall purposes of our organization are to promote high standards of nursing practice and to promote the welfare of nurses to the end that all people may have better nursing care.
For the past 30 years, the American Nurses' Association has encouraged the growth and development of nonprofessional nursing personnel needed to take over functions which professional nurses could no longer carry along with their own added responsibilities. Working with other interested groups, we have promoted the development of educational programs for practical nurses and to some extent have assisted in the growth of practical-nurse organizations. Considering the practical nurse to be a practitioner for whom licensure should be provided in the public interest, the American Nurses' Association has promoted State nursing practice acts to provide for licensing qualified practitioners, and to facilitate their interstate licensure. Largely through the efforts of our State and Territorial nurses associations, the laws of 47 jurisdictions now provide for licensing of practical nurses and for State accreditation of schools of practical nursing.
That question was brought up-
For various reasons, the demand for nursing services has been increasing at a rapid rate; and from all indications, this demand will continue to increase. If the needs for nursing care in this country are to be adequately met we must increase the supply of all kinds of prepared nursing personnel and effectively use the potential contributions of each member of the nursing team.
The first priority in need for financial aid in nursing education is the need for scholarships for graduate registered nurses in supplementary and in advanced programs preparing for administrative and supervisory positions in nursing services, and for administrative and teaching positions in schools of nursing.
The most fundamental nursing problem facing the nursing profession and the people of our country lies in the urgent need for an adequate supply of highly trained administrative and teaching personnel. It is our fervent hope that this committee will deal with this problem, and will give consideration to title 4 of S. 886 which would establish the authority in the United States Public Service for the granting of traineeships for the categories of professional personnel.
Chairman Hill. Of the graduate nurses, professional personnel ?
Miss Olson. Yes, that will come in title 4 and would establish that in the United States Public Health Service.