COVID and Nursing: Where to from Here?

COVID and Nursing: Where to from Here?


COVID-19 exposed torn threads deep within the U.S. health care system as well as the nation’s social fabric, evidenced by damaging misinformation. To prevent a repeat down the road, Johns Hopkins Nursing researchers, educators, practitioners, and nurse administrators teamed up to look at what went wrong and what can be made right.

In brief, “Four critically important, inter-related domains needing improvement individually, interpersonally, within communities, and for critical public policy reform were identified: Social determinants of health, mental health, communication, and the nursing workforce,” write Nancy Reynolds, Deborah Baker, Rita D’Aoust, Maria Docal, Nancy Goldstein, Lisa Grubb, Melissa Hladek, Binu Koirala, Karan Kverno, Catherine Ling, Nada Lukkahatai, Kimberly McIltrot, Vinciya Pandian, Natalie Regier, Elizabeth Sloand, Cecília Tomori, and Jennifer Wenzel in Sigma’s Journal of Nursing Scholarship (“COVID-19: Implications for Nursing and Health Care in the United States”).

The good news is that in exposing weaknesses, “the pandemic illuminates the way toward reforms that could improve our ability not only to cope with likely future epidemics but also to better serve the health care needs of the entire population.”

Where to start?

  • Measures must be taken to address social determinants of health and health disparities.
  • Action is urgently needed to strengthen prevention and access to mental health and substance use disorder care.
  • Communication must be improved.
  • There must be greater investment in and support of the nursing and healthcare workforce.

The authors and their colleagues stand ready: “We now have the opportunity to reform the flawed health care system that made COVID-19 far more damaging than necessary in the U.S.”

Read the full report.

Stay Up-To-Date

Get updates on the latest stories, from hot topics, to faculty research, alumni profiles, and more.

Ways to subscribe