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Nurses Missing from Healthcare Reform Talks

By Jennifer Thew RN  
   February 01, 2017

Nurse leaders could provide President Trump with insights to improve the nation's health and healthcare system, but they have not yet been included in the president's talks regarding healthcare reform.

Nurses are integral to the working of the healthcare system, yet not one has yet been called to advise the Trump administration on healthcare reform.

At more than 3.1 million strong, registered nurses are the largest group of healthcare professionals in the United States. They are also (for the 15th year in a row) the most trusted of any profession.

Yet, despite their number and esteem, President Donald Trump's administration has not actively sought input from nurse leaders regarding the future of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, it's promised replacement, or healthcare reform in general.

Nursing groups such as the Tri-Council for Nursing and the Nursing Community coalition, reached out to Vice President Mike Pence, head of the Trump presidential transition team, after the election with offers to engage with the new administration regarding its healthcare agenda.

No nursing leaders were on the roster at Trump's Dec. 28 meeting with healthcare executives, however.

"I like to see that he's surrounding himself with people like Toby Cosgrove and the CEO of the Mayo Clinic [John Noseworthy] and those types of folks," says Claire Zangerle, MSN, MBA, RN, Chief Nurse Executive for Allegheny Health Network in Pittsburgh.


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Jennifer Thew, RN, is the senior nursing editor at HealthLeaders.

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