Veteran's Day 2016 - A Salute to Military Nurses

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    Nurses and military veterans are often called heroes. When the nurse IS a veteran, then the term super-hero should be used!

    Veteran's Day 2016 - A Salute to Military Nurses

    What do you think of when you say the term military veteran? An aging WWII vet in a wheelchair in a nursing home? A Vietnam vet in fatigues? Or do you think of the modern day military veteran you might see on TV? They may be male, female, have served in active combat or in peacetime. Yet, anyone who wore the uniform is a veteran and many are nurses.

    Veteran’s Day is the day set aside to honor military veterans.

    From the Veteran’s Administration, this is the story of Veteran’s Day:

    “Armistice Day officially received its name in America in 1926 through a Congressional resolution. It became a national holiday 12 years later by similar Congressional action. If the idealistic hope had been realized that World War I was “the War to end all wars,” November 11 might still be called Armistice Day. But only a few years after the holiday was proclaimed, war broke out in Europe. Sixteen and one-half million Americans took part. Four hundred seven thousand of them died in service, more than 292,000 in battle.

    Armistice Day Changed To Honor All Veterans

    The first celebration using the term Veterans Day occurred in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1947. Raymond Weeks, a World War II veteran, organized "National Veterans Day," which included a parade and other festivities, to honor all veterans. The event was held on November 11, then designated Armistice Day. Later, U.S. Representative Edward Rees of Kansas proposed a bill that would change Armistice Day to Veterans Day. In 1954, Congress passed the bill that President Eisenhower signed proclaiming November 11 as Veterans Day. Raymond Weeks received the Presidential Citizens Medal from President Reagan in November 1982. Weeks' local parade and ceremonies are now an annual event celebrated nationwide.”

    • Military nurses have a long and very proud history of service:
    • Army Nurse Corps became part of the USA in 1901
    • Navy Nurse Corps established by Congress in 1908
    • Air Force Nurse Corps became part of the USAF in 1949

    Military nurses have also paid the ultimate price in war since the Spanish-American War. From WWI to WWII, Korea, Vietnam and our current conflict, nurses have served in forward operating units to care for the wounded. The Military Nurses Memorial in Arlington National Cemetery is a solemn reminder of the sacrifice so many nurses have made in service to our great country.

    And nurses have made tremendous contributions to care during war. Trauma care has come along way from the Spanish-American War when field amputations without the use of anesthesia or antibiotics were common. Nowadays, we have forward operating units that can set up and operate a trauma unit and operating room in a very short time.

    Most of the military-related trauma care advances have occurred during the last 16 years since the war on global terrorism began. Some of the new tools of pre-hospital care:

    • Improved tourniquets
    • Hemostatic agents such as QuickClot Combat Gauze
    • TXA which is a synthetic antifibrinolytic that inhibits the clotting mechanism

    And nurses helped to develop and test these advances. Battlefield innovations have boosted the survivability of previously unsurvivable injuries.

    Military nurses also serve in peacetime and in other military installations worldwide. They serve in medical-surgical units, intensive care units, clinics, other outpatient facilities and anywhere else they are called to serve. Not only active duty personnel are cared for by military nurses - many civilian workers and family members as well as veterans receive care at military hospitals and clinics.

    Whether in peace or wartime, military nurses have served with honor. As we celebrate all veterans this Veteran’s Day, please remember that many nurses and servicemen and women currently serve in hostile fire zones.

    AN salutes all our military veterans and especially our military nurse veterans for their heroism, volunteerism, service and sacrifice!
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    10 Comments

  3. by   sevensonnets
    I know several nurses and physicians as well who served our country in Desert Storm, many of whom are still practicing. They are true heroes in every sense of the word.
  4. by   adventure_rn
    To all current and former military members out there, and to all of the families with loved ones who are serving, thank you for your service to our country. Your heroism, courage, and sacrifice are appreciated, this day and every day!!
  5. by   Here.I.Stand
    A Navy RN spoke at my daughter's 4th grade Veterans Day program today. She had several pictures of herself with some of the Afghan kids they treated. One was a teenage boy with one AKA and his other leg in an ex-fix...she said they worked so hard to save that leg because there is NO help over there for people who can't walk.

    So yes, heroes, for MANY people.
  6. by   smartassmommy
    To all of our vets, thank you for your service and the innovations that you have brought about. I remember correctly, it was the Korean War that brought about the CRNA.
  7. by   traumaRUs
    HAPPY VETERAN'S DAY!!!
  8. by   chare
    Quote from traumaRUs
    HAPPY VETERAN'S DAY!!!
    Is this one directed to all veterans, or are we still highlighting those that served as nurses?
  9. by   traumaRUs
    All veterans!!!!
  10. by   moldyoldyrn
    I was a Navy nurse for 12 years. It was one of the best jobs I ever had, actually probably the best. The education I got was astounding (I had my BSN when inducted, got my Masters on duty), the friendships were everlasting, I got to travel just about anywhere I wanted, saw and encountered things I other wise would never have seen. The education part was not limited to just degrees, there was always something to attend, some class to go to, they would train you for whatever you wanted to do. There is so much good about the military nursing experience. I was never stationed anywhere but with the Marines and they were a wonderful bunch of people to care for. They were always respectful and took care of you if you needed it. My husband was killed in the bombing of the Marine Headquarters in Beirut. The Marines took care of everything and kept it personal. I had Generals sitting in my living room and they attended my husband's funeral along with many NCOs. They were very affected by what happened and showed it. I have a love for them that will never end. If I could live it all over again and take care of them I would. funny thing was I went in to get on a hospital ship. They decommissioned the ships right as I went in. 12 years later and they commissioned the newer ones but I was discharged. It was my choice but I had 2 small children and need to care for them more. I recommend trying military nursing to anyone if you think you can do it. I had a ball and I am grateful I did it.
  11. by   blackberry74
    I served the US Army from 92-94 as a turbine generator mechanic. Didn't become a medical professional until recently. I adore my fellow veterans and easily relate to them when I have them as patients. Often when people realize that I'm a veteran and thank me for my service, I don't know know what to say. To me it was serving my country and seeing the world. To my patients it was war, sacrifice, and pain for years afterwards. I salute my fellow veterans and continue to provide the very best care that I can for them. Thank you, my fellow nurses, veterans, for your service. And you are welcome for mine.
  12. by   traumaRUs
    @moldyoldyRN - so very sorry for your loss. Your husband's and your sacrifices will never be forgotten. All vets are family!

    I'm always so very proud of the AN members who post about their military service - you are awesome!

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