National Nurses United

Registered Nurse October 2009

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Contents FEATURES 10 Mental Block A new federal law intended to ensure equal access to mental healthcare for patients lacks teeth and is full of loopholes. By Heather Boerner 15 Group Therapy In recent years, government experts as well as drug companies have pushed mass screenings of patients for mental health problems. Could this trend do more harm than good? By Matt Isaacs 18 Leader of the Pack RN board member Carol Koelle is always out in front, whether in nursing, organizing, or changing policy. By Sarah E. Clark 10 DEPARTMENTS 4 News Briefs CHW RNs in California and Nevada broker landmark master contract; CDC reaffirms standard of N-95 or better masks against H1N1; Maine Coast nurses fight spike in health insurance costs; Florida RNs prepare to introduce state ratio bill; Chicago RNs rally to save county healthcare services; Ohio RNs monitor legislation and work toward single-payer; RNs at Cypress Fairbanks form first PPC. 9 A Closer Look Congress is determined to pass national healthcare reform legislation that's touted to transform the system as we know it. But does it? An examination of the bill reveals the good, the bad, and who benefits the most. By Rose Ann DeMoro 4 on the cover: (Clockwise from top) Saint Francis Memorial Hospital RNs Lonnie Kidd, Adele Maxie, and Terri Mogensen celebrate their new groundbreaking master contract covering 13,000 nurses with Catholic Healthcare West. Photo by Lauren Reid. OCTOBER 2009 W W W. C A L N U R S E S . O R G REGISTERED NURSE 3

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