This is a very moving and important book, which should be required reading for all medical students and doctors. Ms. Gordon who spent three years following three extra-ordinary nurses learned (and in the book presents) more knowledge and insights about sickness, pain, caring, and the health care system than my medicial residents learn during their three year (internal medicine) residency. Each of the three nurses covers a different part of the health care map (oncology chemotherapy nurse, home health nurse, and inpatient nurse) and illustrates the critical and often invisible role nurses play in health care. What the book does so ably is to highlight these special caring roles, and then place them in the context of what is happening in the U.S. health care system today. Ms. Gordon, an advocate for universal health insurance and consumer accoutablity starkly contrasts the bright light these and thousands of other of the quiet heros in nursing, with the dark side of market driven health care that threatens these values and heroism. If for nothing else, the book is worth reading for a useful and interesting history of the practice of nursing, which is interwoven with the stories of these three nurses. Nurses are the essence of quality and this book is a high quality look at their important and endangered role. (Dr. Gordon Schiff internist who directs the Clinical Quality Research Unit at Cook County Hospital in Chicago.)
Gordon's book portrays the caregiving process of professional nurses in such clear, lucid terms that readers unfamilar with nursing will say "Ahhhh, now I understand." With this in mind, nurses should give copies of this book to anyone who needs to know what nurses are and what nurses do. This might be the nurse's neighbors, parents, patients, City Council Chair, Governor, or State and Federal legislators. The reader will see very sophisticated knowledge and skills exhibited by the three nurses providing care to patients in the stories. This book provides clear-cut demonstrations of nurse-delivered services that MUST be reimbursed under the Medicaid, Medicare, and other health insurance programs. It also gives evidence of why nurses in advanced practice must have prescriptive authority, hospital admitting and clinical privileges, be admitted to provider panels of managed care organizations, and be a reimbursable member of a telehealth team.
A must read for all those working IN or WITH the profession of nursing. Gordon discusses how the changes in our health care system have affected both the nurses role and quality patient care issues. The essential need for collaboration of all health care personnel is woven throughout the content. I required this book for a senior nursing course I just taught at Wayne State University in Detroit and the students were most impressed with the book and its approach to nursing, medicine and health care. A must read for nurses, physicians, hospital administration, potential students and the general public. Afterall, we are all potential patients and we should be aware of what is happening to the largest population of health care providers, the nurses!
The most under rated people in our society are nurses,this is an introduction to the ever present caregivers in healthcare today.The most varied role and most significant in all aspects of health care is the nurse.This was a wonderful read for all of those who may ever be the receiver of any aspect of their care from nurses in our country, basically everyone,a must have.For those considering the profession as a career,and the family members who would like an overview of "all in a days work", this will invoke serious thought.Yes, I am a nurse and for me to recommend a book written on nursing....kudos to all involved in the creation.
or even get sick--at least not before you read this book! Illness hasn't changed but our resources have. If you've needed a nurse, a doctor or a hospital bed recently, you may already suspect that your life is in danger. Suzanne Gordon makes it easier to understand how this change happened, and what you can do to protect yourself, or anyone you love. I can't protect my "babies" from ever becoming ill, but I've given them this book. The more they know, the more they can do to protect themselves.
Suzanne Gordon does a superb job of weaving together the lives of three nurses, historical tidbits about nursing, the highlights of nursing theory plus the trends and effects of managed care into one beautiful book. Excellent reading for both nurses and non-nurses alike. A *must buy* and perfect gift for your favorite nurses and non-nurses alike -- especially during National Nurses Week (May).
Having been an RN for almost 30 years, there have been many times when my colleages and I have said, "We otta write a book! But then reality sets in as we have realized that noone would BELIEVE what we had to say about the health care system and our roles in particular.Bravo to Suzanne Gordon! She tells it like it is with the insight of someone who has been in the trenches and does not suffer from "tunnel vision!" My practice has been validated and the reading of her words was a shot in the arm!Nurses and those who live with, know and love them NEED to read this book and reread it. Pass it on or better yet buy them for your friends and family keeping your own copy for the future.This is a view of the reality of nursing, who we are and what we do, where we fit into the larger health care picture and what the health care system is trying to do to us."It takes a NURSE to save your life."Marilyn Anne Blythe, RN, CBC Brigham & Women's HospitalBoston, MA
I've been a nurse for several years, and I got the book on recommendation from another nurse friend of mine. I was, and continue to be, amazed at the power of this book. It highlighted in stark words and numbers, problems facing health care today, while at the same time brightening the work with the all too human touch of nurses, patients and doctors. Once you read this book, you will understand why legislation such as The Patient Safety Act came to be, and why it is needed. It describes why nursing is so necessary, why even bathing or feeding a patient are not always within the realm of tasks to be assigned to unlicensed personnel. I urge everyone to read this book, and be touched by Gordon's powerful writing. Diana Katseyeanis, RN
"I work with nurses every day but it took Suzanne Gordon to open my eyes to see all they do and how important-and under-appreciated-their work is. She shows the folly of the current trend toward de-emphasizing the skilled, multifaceted caregiving of registered nurses. Life Support should be required reading for all doctors, health policy decision-makers and anyone else who cares about the future of our healthcare system. It's well-written, moving and vitally important."
-Timothy McCall, M.D., Author of Examining Your Doctor