What does the nurse reinvestment act mean to you?

Rosemary Donley, Mary Jean Flaherty, Eileen Sarsfield, Laura Taylor, Heidi Maloni, Eileen Flanagan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


During 2002, the 107th Congress passed landmark legislation, the Nurse Reinvestment Act, P.L. 107-205. This article discusses the specific provisions of P.L. 107-205 within the context of the contemporary literature and the experience of the nursing shortage. The authors ask nurses to examine what the Nurse Reinvestment Act means for their career development. In laying out the anatomy of the Nurse Reinvestment Act, title by title, and section by section, the article presents the Congressional plan for addressing the two faces of the shortage: Nurse Recruitment, Title I, and Nurse Retention, Title II. Under Title I, Nurse Retention, Section 101 presents Definitions used in the public law. Section 102, promotes the development of Public Health Service Announcements about the nursing profession. In the last section of Title I, Section 103, Congress establishes a National Nurse Service Corps. Title II, Nurse Retention, Section 201, is directed toward Building Career Ladders and Retaining Quality Nurses. In Section 202, the development of Comprehensive Geriatric Education is encouraged. Section 203 establishes a Nurse Faculty Loan program, while the last section of Title II, Section 204, mandates reports from the General Accounting Office. The 107th Congress adjourned in November 2002 without acting on the appropriation bill that would have made the Nurse Reinvestment Act a reality. Before the new Congress meets in January 2003, nurses must join with their colleagues to assure adequate funding for P.L. 107-205. The websites of the American Nurses Association (www.nursingworld.org), the National League for Nursing (www.nln.org), The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (www.aacn.org), and the Specialty Nursing Organizations (www.aspanlorg/Spec) provide direction in approaching members of Congress. However, because of the importance of the Nurse Reinvestment Act, nurses must also align themselves with representatives from the many groups who supported the legislation. Readers of this Online Journal in Nursing article should be empowered to contact the American Hospital Association, the Catholic Hospital Association, the American Association of Retired Persons, the American Medical Association, the National Association for Home Care, and the Service Employees International Union for their assistance and the support of their membership in the passage of the FY 2002 Labor/HHS/Education Appropriations Bill.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)66-88
Number of pages23
JournalOnline journal of issues in nursing
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2003


  • Enrollment in nursing programs
  • Faculty for schools of nursing
  • National Nurse Service Corps
  • Nurse Reinvestment Act
  • Nurse recruitment
  • Nurse retention
  • Nursing education
  • Nursing shortage
  • Scholarship and loan repayments
  • Working conditions for nurses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Issues, ethics and legal aspects


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