National Nurses United

California Nurse magazine September 2005

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Editor Lucia Hwang Executive Editor Rose Ann DeMoro Graphic Design and Production Jonathan Wieder Communications Director Charles Idelson Contributors Hedy Dumpel, RN, JD Liz Jacobs, RN California Nurse September 2005 Volume 101/07 (ISSN 0008-1310) is published by the California Nurses Association, 2000 Franklin Street, Oakland, CA. 94612-2908. It provides news of the Association's activities and reports on developments of concern to all Registered Nurses in the state. It also carries general coverage and commentary on matters of nursing practice, community health, and healthcare policy. It is published ten times a year with combined issues in the summer and winter. Periodicals postage paid at Oakland, California. Postmaster send address changes to California Nurse, 2000 Franklin Street, Oakland, CA. 94612-2908. To send a media release or announcement: Phone: 510-273-2200 Ext. 249 Fax: 510-663-0629 California Nurse is carried on the CNA Website: For permission to reprint articles write to Editorial Office. To subscribe: Send $40 ($45 foreign) to Subscription Department. Letter from the President President's Note Hold onto your stethoscopes, people. I want to highlight a particularly noteworthy event this summer: Contrary to what's happening in other states, a Sacramento judge ruled in July that it's illegal for LVNs to admin- ister medication intravenously, a huge victory for patients and protection of RN scope of practice. It's just another example of how California RNs are setting higher standards for the rest of the country. See the news briefs section for more details. Speaking of California RNs setting higher standards, it's that time again. The CNA House of Delegates, your elected nurse leaders, meets every two years and this September, we'll be convening in Oakland. Over three days, almost 500 RNs will learn about, debate, discuss, and vote on various proposals and resolutions meant to build CNA's capacity to help members improve their working conditions and care for their patients. This year we'll be focusing on actions CNA must take in order to provide national leadership of RNs and garner the nationwide support it needs to ultimately win a single payer, universal healthcare system, where all patients regardless of income or status receive decent care. As we like to say, California is not an island. Though we're the standard- bearer for RNs and patients across the country, we've realized for some time that to achieve our healthcare vision, CNA needed to be a player on the national stage and enlist the help of the wider labor movement. To that end, delegates will be considering a proposed affiliation with the AFL-CIO, a national coalition of unions representing working Americans. And as we grow larger, it becomes ever more difficult for just one person to fulfill the roles and duties of the president. So starting in 2007, we are recom- mending that the president and vice president positions be replaced by a four-person Council of Presidents who will be better able to handle the job. These proposals, and more, will be on the table later this month. The convention will also be a chance to celebrate how much we have accomplished in the two years since we last met: ratios went into effect and we've defended them fiercely against roll backs by the Schwarzenegger administration, we continue to organize RNs in Southern California and even in Illinois under the National Nurses Organizing Committee, and we've negotiated unprecedented contracts for our members—most notably Catholic Healthcare West. We'll be recognizing people and groups that have supported us in our tough fights over the past couple years, and famed actor, director, and activist Warren Beatty will be our keynote speaker. RNs will also have a chance to learn the lay of the current healthcare landscape through a series of educational classes we'll be running. It promises to be a momentous and stimulating event. Check out the convention preview in this issue for more information. Talk to you next in October, when we'll be covering the special elec- tion that nobody besides Schwarzenegger wants. Deborah Burger, RN CNA President

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