A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Commentary: To effectively care for others, nurses must first learn to take care of themselves

By Janie Heath, Connie Jennings and Colleen Swartz University of Kentucky Healthcare Stress and the intense pressure of finishing a degree have driven promising students away from the nursing profession. For others committed to a career caring for the sick and injured, unmanaged stress, anxiety and depression have resulted in the tragedy of suicide. Across the nation, we are experiencing a shortage...

Health care professionals, emergency responders not immune to mental illness

By Janie Heath and Jan Findlay Special to KyForward Health care professionals and emergency responders confront the brutality of injury and illness on a daily basis. Too often we assume these heroes can block out the horrors and heartbreak of their jobs — that they are superhuman. But the idea that doctors, nurses, officers and EMTs are impervious to mental illness is untrue. Studies show health...

Commentary: Nursing's challenges real, but so are opportunities to make positive impact

By Janie Heath Special to KyForward   When a brother or sister is hurting, the whole family feels it and worries about it. That is what happens in nursing as well. As the largest health care profession, there are approximately 3 million registered nurses in the United States who I consider part of an extended family.   Do I worry about the stress and fatigue many nurses are experiencing...