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AACN Cosponsors a Pre-Debate Luncheon to Focus the Presidential Candidates’ Attention on Nursing and Healthcare Issues

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Press Release
For Immediate Release

AACN Cosponsors a Pre-Debate Luncheon to Focus the Presidential Candidates’ Attention on Nursing and Healthcare Issues

WASHINGTON, D.C., October 15, 2008 – Today, AACN is cosponsoring a leadership luncheon event in New York to strongly encourage the candidates for President to focus on addressing nursing and healthcare issues. Titled Healthcare in America - The Next National Security Issue: Why the Presidential Candidates Should Be Concerned, this bipartisan event is sponsored by AACN, American Association of Nurse Anesthetists, American Healthcare Association, American Nurses Association, National Center for Assisted Living, and the Creative Coalition.

Many prominent speakers including elected officials, policy experts, and Hollywood celebrities will attend this high profile event and provide comments on issues related to the need for healthcare reform. Health care is one of the domestic issues that will likely come up for discussion during tonight’s presidential debate between Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Barack Obama (D-IL) at Hofstra University on Long Island.

Dr. Harriet Feldman, dean of the Lienhard School of Nursing at Pace University, has been asked by AACN to provide remarks on behalf of nursing education. In her comments, Dr. Feldman will convey the following:

“The ongoing shortage of nurses is contributing to the breakdown of the nation’s ability to ensure access to safe, quality, and affordable health care. Unfortunately, the demand for RNs continues to outpace the supply of new nurses entering the healthcare system each year. More concerning, is the nurse faculty shortage that is preventing schools from accepting additional students. In 2007, over 40,000 students were turned away from baccalaureate and graduate nursing programs because of a lack of faculty. As a stakeholder in healthcare reform, the American Association of Colleges of Nursing offers its expertise by recommending that a significant investment be made to increase the capacity of nursing schools to educate more nurses. Without a robust nursing workforce, the healthcare system will not be able to offer quality health care.”

For more information on AACN’s government affairs agenda and priorities, see

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) is the national voice for university and four-year college education programs in nursing. Representing more than 630 member schools of nursing at public and private institutions nationwide, AACN's educational, research, governmental advocacy, data collection, publications, and other programs work to establish quality standards for bachelor's- and graduate-degree nursing education, assist deans and directors to implement those standards, influence the nursing profession to improve health care, and promote public support of baccalaureate and graduate nursing education, research, and practice.

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Robert Rosseter, 202-463-6930, ext. 231