Sen. Durbin Promotes SIUC Nursing

The Southern
April 8, 2010

CARBONDALE - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin stopped by the Student Health Center to announce $500,000 in federal funding to establish a regional nursing program at SIUC.

The program will be part of the SIU Edwardsville School of Nursing and will admit 42 students in the fall. Durbin said with a state nursing shortage, it is imperative that Southern Illinois trains students to step into an important profession.

"When in time of most need, it's usually a nurse we turn to," Durbin said.

Marcia Maurer, dean of the School of Nursing at SIUE, said nurses are needed in Southern Illinois and thanked Durbin for his commitment to healthcare.

SIU President Glenn Poshard said Durbin has been instrumental in bringing progress to SIU such as the Ethanol Research Center in Edwardsville and University Farms Research/Education Centers in Carbondale.

"For many, many years (Durbin) has been a friend to the university," Poshard said.

Durbin also spoke about health care reform. He said he is not disappointed with the health care reform that passed because without it, the system would be unsustainable. He said 50 million Americans live without health care, and the reform makes less of a burden on them and their families.

He said the bill contains $10 billion for community health clinics that will provide basic primary care for those who would have to rely on hospital emergency rooms.