Fauci Praises ICU Nurses, La Salle University Announces New Nursing Scholarship for Students of Color, and Other Nursing News

ICU nurses working in hospital COVID-19 unit during pandemic

Dr. Anthony Fauci credits nurses who work in intensive care hospital settings as being the “great heroes and heroines” during the COVID-19 pandemic. La Salle University in Philadelphia announces a new scholarship to support increased diversity in nursing education and the workforce. A nursing podcast offers advice, support, and empowerment to those beginning their nurse journey or switching specialties. Read on for more nursing news and insights.

Fauci says ICU nurses are “heroes and heroines of the pandemic”

One of the most notorious healthcare figures of the COVID-19 pandemic has credited nurses who work in intensive care hospital settings throughout the United States as being the “great heroes and heroines” during the pandemic. While speaking to nurses and other healthcare professionals during the recently held National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition, Anthony Fauci, MD, director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases and chief medical advisor to President Joe Biden, praised the nurses in particular for all of their efforts.

“Serious COVID-19 is a disease that was made for the intensive care nurse,” he said. “This is a disease that’s in your hands. As much as developing a vaccine and developing drugs is in my hands as a scientist and a public health person, the on-the-ground, in-the-trenches responsibility and success of this is in the hands of the people who are taking care of these people.”

Read the full transcript of Dr. Fauci’s remarks.

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La Salle University announces new nursing scholarship for students of color

A financial gift from a nurse who graduated from La Salle University in 2006 has led to the initiation of a scholarship that will support increased diversity in nursing education and the workforce. Beginning in Fall 2021, the Gaye Riddick-Burden Scholarship for Undergraduate Nursing will award a $2,000 scholarship to a second-year undergraduate nursing student of color in the university’s School of Nursing and Health Sciences. The scholarship will follow the student through the remainder of their undergraduate education at La Salle. The benefactor, who has requested anonymity, plans to fund the scholarship for at least three years, according to university officials.

According to the university, nurses from minority backgrounds comprised only 19.2% of the registered nurse workforce, citing 2017 survey data from the National Council of State Boards of Nursing and The Forum of State Nursing Workforce Centers. The same survey found men accounted for only 9.1% of the registered nurse workforce.

The scholarship is named for Gaye Riddick-Burden, a La Salle alumna and certified registered nurse practitioner at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia. Riddick-Burden received her undergraduate and graduate degrees in nursing from La Salle. The anonymous benefactor said he enlisted the help of La Salle University’s Office of Advancement in identifying “a well-regarded and successful graduate of color from La Salle’s nursing program” for whom the scholarship should be named.

In her field, Riddick-Burden specializes in the treatment of patients living with sickle cell disease, which disproportionately affects people of African descent and other ethnic groups. Riddick-Burden calls it “my passion,” something to which she has “dedicated my entire career.” Her time at La Salle inspired her to find ways to give back to her community and field. In particular, she guest-lectured at La Salle and found opportunities to mentor and precept La Salle nursing students in her sickle cell unit in which she worked.

Podcast spotlight: The Empowered Nurse Podcast

Hosted by Lacey Magen, BSN, RN, a board-certified nurse and past middle school teacher turned nurse mentor and coach, The Empowered Nurse Podcast offers advice, support, and empowerment to those beginning their nurse journey and those switching specialties. The podcast brings tips for success and conversations with other nurses and professionals in the medical space to inspire nurses to find their “power.”

The most recent episodes include “My Nursepreneur Story” and “Why You Should Consider Taking a Social Media Break.” Episodes are available on iTunes and Spotify.

For more nursing news, insights, and other healthcare resources, visit our Resource Center. Need Nursing CE courses? Find individual CE courses in your state, or save time and money with the Elite Nursing Passport Membership.

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