My recent interactions with the public has me thinking about the role that we, as nurses, play in society’s health. While I was visiting my elderly father, who was hospitalized for a fractured femur, I had the opportunity to interact with a gentleman who was discouraged with the care that his mother received in a nursing home. 

He explained to me that his mother had become dehydrated after entering the home, she then developed delirium for which she was medicated and shortly thereafter, she died. Unfortunately, this is not an unusual story. Expert gerontological nurses would have anticipated this progression of events and intervened in a timely manner, with a better outcome.