Nurses valued members of medical teamsI must take...

the Forum

July 29, 1993

Nurses valued members of medical teams

I must take exception to Dr. Brian D. Briscoe's letter of July 17 regarding the qualifications of nurse practitioners.

I have gone to nurse-midwives for the births of both my children and received excellent, expert care. Through nine months I saw an obstetrician only once -- as required -- and my nurse practitioners delivered healthy babies.

My daughter was recently diagnosed with diabetes, and after we left the hospital we called the nurse associated with the hospital's diabetes clinic for daily insulin regulation. In addition to our 6:30 a.m. conversations, I also called her on weekends or at night -- whenever I had a question.

Who does Dr. Briscoe think cares for the patients released so quickly from hospitals in an effort to contain costs? Nurses employed by home-care agencies do this follow up care.

Perhaps Dr. Briscoe is unaware that a nurse practitioner does not have a B.A. but a master's in nursing science, generally with a specialty.

I am also a nurse -- a registered nurse with a bachelor of science in nursing from a four-year university. In my 18 years of experience -- 15 clinical and three research -- I have been lucky to have worked with physicians who respect nursing and willingly make use of nurses' astute observation and skills.

The physicians I have worked with have been more interested in working as health care team members for the benefit of the patient rather than wearing their I.Q.s on their chests. Believe me -- there is no status found in working weekends, nights or holidays.

Beverly Fink

Baltimore

Social compact

I am writing this letter in response to the July 14 Other Voices column by the Rev. Douglas I. Miles, entitled "One city, one social compact."

I find Mr. Miles' article strangely articulated. He writes of two cities: one upscale and one trying to stay afloat. With this part, I agree. But he then continues on to segment the city further by race.

Mr. Miles has fallen upon the same old talk that has divided the city: race. Why does he speak to the needs of African-Americans rather to those individuals, whether white, black or Hispanic, who have to struggle to stay afloat? It makes one wonder whether BUILD'S acronym means something other than Baltimore United in Leadership Development.

I would hope that Mr. Miles' article does not represent the leadership of BUILD. There is enough race polarization within the city. And to continue to state that jobs must go to blacks is to misunderstand the realities of poor, under-educated workers. His emphasis should be more directly focused on education.

The mother of three working for $5.50 in the hotel industry seems suspect. Having worked in the industry, I would surmise that this individual has been at this level due to her lack of education, which has limited her ability to move forward financially and professionally.

I do support Mr. Miles' position that the political leadership needs to tie development money to jobs. It has been done in other cities and states, and can be done here.

However, until the work force has adequate education and training, it will be hard to put any "mother of three" in a job that supports that family.

Finally, the social compact that Mr. Miles calls for should echo his last sentence in the article. "The social compact calls for one city in which all residents share in prosperity" should mean just that, and not a racially motivated compact.

A.W. Hicks

Baltimore

Sky box sexism

If economic development is a major initiative of government and business, then the plan of action must include the recognition and participation of all community interest groups.

A recent case in point that illustrates selective representation on a high profile project is the invitation list for the kick-off to sell sky boxes and club seats in support of the acquisition of a football team for Baltimore.

The message was a clear statement from the traditional male power elite that women (1) were not a viable part of the business community, (2) were not a viable economic force, (3) were not interested in football, (4) or were all of the above.

The point is not that women should or could buy a sky box, but rather that all interested citizens of this state should be represented in any collective effort to improve or enhance the economic development of the state.

That bias exists may be so, but it is well past the time for the business community to perpetuate the status-quo by staging public events that are exclusionary, if not a throw-back to a social model which is past its time.

Tucky P. Ramsey

Baltimore

The gay ban is not about civil rights

Many intelligent, well meaning, concerned people (including some of your own editors) have put forth some very cogent reasons for rescinding the ban on homosexuals in the military.

The cases cited of some particular individuals who served heroically and with honor have helped to convince some readers that the ban should be removed.

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