Congressman Griffith shares inside look at legislative activities with nursing student
During his visit to the Leadership in Nursing class on Feb. 19 in Cook Hall, Congressman Morgan Griffith shared advice and observations on legislative issues, processes and policies at both the federal and state levels.
After an introduction by President Penelope W. Kyle, Griffith talked about the need for individuals to participate in legislative processes, the challenges facing health care delivery in rural areas, the Affordable Health Care Act’s prospects and the future for nurses.
“Each one of you has to decide the way you want to go,” said Virginia’s Ninth District Congressman, who is a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Health. “There are many options available to you - bedside, management and community agencies, for example.”
To make their voices heard, Griffith urged the students to register and vote as well as to “stay educated on the issues that are important to you.”
Griffith counseled the 49 senior, or fourth level, nursing students, to meet their state and federal representatives as opportunities present.
“If your legislator knows there is a connection with you and that there is a relationship, then your message will mean something to them,” Griffith said. “It really makes a difference and helps them understand the issues from their constituents’ points of view.”
Griffith was invited by the fourth-level nursing students as part of a project to advocate on nursing issues by the class, taught by Associate Professor of Nursing Kereen Mullenbach.
Mullenbach said the nurses’ professional role in guiding as well as delivering health care is part of the class, which includes sections on advocacy and legal and legislative issues as well as budgeting, staffing, technological and organizational change and conflict management.