Families arrive to our clinical practices having already obtained so much information from a variety of avenues: social media, friends, articles or just perhaps word of mouth. We are all aware of the misinformation about vaccines that has been posted online, fueling concern of invalidated evidence on the safety and efficacy of vaccinations. Years of evidence, scientific research and vaccine development have prevented millions of children from contracting serious illnesses. And yet, through powerful posts, we see the tides shifting. It's challenging to validate parental concern while distilling the evidence that we have learned and practiced. Just as we ask families to consider the credibility of any source of information, NAPNAP is committed to sending a message of clarity as well.
As our community engages more on social media, information that may have been previously shared in a breakroom, classroom or meeting may now be disseminated to an even larger audience through one digital media channel or another. However, we never know who is on the other end of our messaging and how messages can potentially be misinterpreted. In recent years, colleagues have been asked to testify to state legislatures and media. Those that question the value of pediatric-focused APRNs may use social media posts and online poll responses as "evidence" that we do not provide a high level of quality of care.
I encourage members to be mindful of what you post on social media, even when it may seem that the discussion is closed. Be wary of participating in social media polls asking about our roles. Just as you take great care in providing clear and accurate clinical documentation, take the same perspective in online communication. NAPNAP is committed to positive, evidence-based communication about the great impact we have on the health and well-being of children.
Social media will continue to develop and flourish in our communities. It is a powerful tool to communicate in-the-moment news on important issues. However, we need to be cognizant of what and how we post to protect our trusted profession. I think we would agree that this is the same advice we would provide to our patients and families.
Wonder Weekend Recap
Thank you to all who attended our Chapter and SIG Summit, Leadership and Advocacy Forum, and Capitol Hill Day visits in Washington DC! NAPNAP Chapter and SIG leaders had the opportunity to learn about engagement and network with one another to share ideas about current projects they are working on. It was so impressive to see the amazing work our chapter and SIGs are engaged with. We truly are making a great difference in our communities.
The Leadership and Advocacy Forum provided an opportunity for members to learn about leadership, media training, and becoming an effective advocate. Our Capitol Hill Day visits were energizing as members had direct conversations with senator and representative offices to take action to address youth nicotine addiction, improve public awareness of access to vaccines, protecting immigrant children in federal custody, and supporting pediatric advanced practice education. Thank you to our executive board for facilitating discussion, to our national office staff for helping organize all the details, and to all attendees for your engagement in the weekend's activities. NAPNAP remains an association strongly committed to its members and a critical voice for children's health.
Happy National Nurse Practitioner Week (November 10 – 16) to all!