RESPECT FOR NURSING Diana Mason’s concerns regarding the lack of nursing representation on the Healthy People 2020

advisory committee and the elimination of the chief nurse officer position at the American Red Cross are completely justified (Editorial, July). It’s particularly disturbing to learn that an institution such as the Red Cross considers it unnecessary to have a nurse executive position. How does the Red Cross plan to direct nursing care? What is the rationale behind this decision? Does it reflect a lack of respect for the nursing profession? Colleagues, we need to voice our opinions. Let’s claim nursing’s place, which has been earned through years of hard work and dedication to preserving and restoring the health of patients.
Norma Montalban, BSN, RN Miami, FL

and urinary pathologies as well as gastrointestinal conditions can present similarly to acute appendicitis. It’s particularly important to think about the possibility of a ruptured ectopic pregnancy, because waiting and seeing in this case could prove fatal.
Mary Gahbauer, MD Westerville, OH

THE HOSPICE OPTION In “No Room at the Inn” (Reflections, September), Beth was discharged from the hospital to a skilled nursing facility when her end-of-life care became more than her family could handle. But she had an alternative. Her local hospice could have provided care and comfort while also assisting her family in bringing her home to die.
Barbara Macfie, MSN, RN Goodyear, AZ

and went somewhere willingly, unaware of the true purpose of the trip. In the majority of the nine cases, the abductors performed the cesarean section. A medical professional was involved in only one case, in which the victim was lured to Mexico, where a physician performed the cesarean section in a clinic. Some victims were stabbed, shot, or strangled to unconsciousness before the surgery was performed. Although they may have been alive during the cesarean section, all but one woman—the victim who was operated on by the physician— succumbed to their injuries. DIAGNOSING DEPRESSION In the June issue, author Sherry A. Greenberg responded to a letter writer’s inquiry about who may diagnose depression (Letters). Her response omitted psychologists.
Herbert R. Seiden, PhD Los Angeles M

APPENDICITIS PRESENTATION The message of Polly Gerber Zimmermann’s informative article “Is It Appendicitis?” (Emergency, September) is that presentation can be nonspecific and accurate diagnosis difficult, leading to a “wait-and-see” approach of repeated assessments over time. Because presentation is vague, it’s important that we think of a differential diagnosis. Reproductive

INFANT ABDUCTIONS I found the article on nonfamily infant abductions (Forensic Files, September) to be most interesting and disturbing. Regarding the nine cesarean sections that were forcibly performed: Was the victim alive when the surgery was performed? Where were the cesarean sections performed, and by whom? Were the women chosen specifically because the abductor wanted the fetus?
Shannon E. Perry, PhD, RN, FAAN Phoenix

In the October Editorial (“Don’t Ever Let Go of the Thread”) we published an incorrect URL for a list of resources on clinical narrative. The correct URL is

Coauthor Cathy Nahirny responds: Most of the victims were targeted because they were pregnant and the abductor was unable or unwilling to wait until the birth. A few were victimized in their homes, whereas others were befriended by the abductor

AJN welcomes letters to the editor regarding recently published articles, although critiques of original research may be submitted at any time. Submissions must be typed, contain fewer than 300 words, and list the correspondent’s name, address, and phone number or e-mail address; include no more than three references for any statistics or studies cited. Letters will be edited for length, clarity, and accuracy. Submission of a letter will constitute the author’s permission to publish it, although it doesn’t guarantee publication. Letters become the property of AJN and may be published in all media. Send letters to AJN Lippincott Williams & Wilkins 333 Seventh Avenue, 19th Floor New York, NY 10001 (212) 886-1206 (fax)

AJN M December 2008


Vol. 108, No. 12


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