Nursing with a Message: Public Health Demonstration Projects in New York City

Nursing with a Message: Public Health Demonstration Projects in New York City 1044 The Journal of American History March 2018 Nursing with a Message:  Public Health Dem- encountered new professional competitors onstration Projects in New York City. By Pa- among social workers offering a similar ser - tricia D’Antonio. (New Brunswick: Rutgers vice. And while professional boundary making University Press, 2017. xviii, 145 pp. Cloth, was not entirely responsible, D’Antonio argues $85.00. Paper, $26.95.) that during the 1930s, public health nurse ad - ministrators abandoned their commitment to Patricia D’Antonio N ’s ursing with a Message is researching the relationship between the fam - a compelling case study of efforts by New York ily’s life experiences and the health of its mem - City public health advocates of the 1920s and bers, concentrating instead on carving out a 1930s to design three demonstration projects professionalism (in contrast with social - work that would test programs to centraliz-e medi ers) based primarily on the scientific creden - cal services and provide medical care mo - re ef tials earned through nursing education. In ficiently to the poor. Internal dynamics of the D’Antonio’s view, the leaders addressed their demonstration clinics (funded by the R -ocke aspirations for professional identity at the ex - feller Foundation and the Milbank Memorial pense of the needs of their community. Fund) provide a context for D’Antonio’s story, D’Antonio’s goals are ambitious but not en - and the rise and fall of foundation support is tirely met. Though she suggests that her study background; but a group of leaders among of three demonstrations includes an examina - New York City’s public health nurses are the tion of racial differences, she gives short shrift central characterN s iu n rsing with a Message. to the project and the nurses located in an Af - D’Antonio describes their work as pr - oj rican American neighborhood. Her effort to ect administrators charged with addressing show how local families challenged the nurs - a community need for medical aid, and she es’ agenda is tantalizing but largely unrealized. brings to light their efforts to enhance the Furthermore, the geographic limits of her case role of the public health nurse. Through the study and the unique context of the 1920s clinics, public health nurses planned to teach confound her wish to use the story as a cau - constituents to utilize (and demand) pr -even tionary tale for demonstration projects fund - tive health care as well as medical services. The ed through the Affordable Care Act (2010). nurse leaders delivered this message of pr - even Nonetheless, Nursing with a Message is an in - tion by offering pregnancy-care services for sightful look at the relationship between social expecting mothers and preventive pediatric welfare and social medicine in the early tw - enti services for preschoolers (two groups not tar - eth century as seen through the experiences of geted by earlier public health efforts), by teach - professional nurses trapped between the two. ing the importance of preventive dental care, and by offering scientifically approved advice Kathleen W. Jones about nutrition. At the same time, these pub - Virginia Tech lic health nurses researched the value of health Blacksburg, Virginia prevention and utilized the demonstrations to doi: 10.1093/jahist/jax494 promote specialized scientific training for pub - lic health nurses. D’Antonio tells a complex Gertrude Weil:  Jewish Progressive in the New story of efforts to balance a commitment to South. By Leonard Rogoff. (Chapel Hill: U- ni community service with a commitment to the versity of North Carolina Press, 2017. xiv, 354 work of advanced education that would - gener pp. $35.00.) ate professional respect from the pantheon of medical professionals. In this new book, Leonard Rogoff examines Public health nursing lost its balance, the life of Gertrude Weil, a reformer from D’Antonio suggests, during the 1930s as foun - dation support was withdrawn. Nurse-admin - Goldsboro, North Carolina. Though today Weil is largely not remembered, Rogoff, in the istrators who had negotiated with physicians first full-length biography of her, offers a f - asci and with representatives of welfare agencies to represent the “message” of prevention, includ - nating and informative account that not only ing prevention of mental health problems, noe w xamines her activism but also effectively s - itu Downloaded from https://academic.oup.com/jah/article-abstract/104/4/1044/4932671 by Ed 'DeepDyve' Gillespie user on 16 March 2018 http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Journal of American History Oxford University Press

Nursing with a Message: Public Health Demonstration Projects in New York City

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Oxford University Press
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© The Author 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Organization of American Historians. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.
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0021-8723
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1945-2314
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10.1093/jahist/jax494
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Abstract

1044 The Journal of American History March 2018 Nursing with a Message:  Public Health Dem- encountered new professional competitors onstration Projects in New York City. By Pa- among social workers offering a similar ser - tricia D’Antonio. (New Brunswick: Rutgers vice. And while professional boundary making University Press, 2017. xviii, 145 pp. Cloth, was not entirely responsible, D’Antonio argues $85.00. Paper, $26.95.) that during the 1930s, public health nurse ad - ministrators abandoned their commitment to Patricia D’Antonio N ’s ursing with a Message is researching the relationship between the fam - a compelling case study of efforts by New York ily’s life experiences and the health of its mem - City public health advocates of the 1920s and bers, concentrating instead on carving out a 1930s to design three demonstration projects professionalism (in contrast with social - work that would test programs to centraliz-e medi ers) based primarily on the scientific creden - cal services and provide medical care mo - re ef tials earned through nursing education. In ficiently to the poor. Internal dynamics of the D’Antonio’s view, the leaders addressed their demonstration clinics (funded by the R -ocke aspirations for professional identity at the ex - feller Foundation and the Milbank Memorial pense of the needs of their community. Fund) provide a context for D’Antonio’s story, D’Antonio’s goals are ambitious but not en - and the rise and fall of foundation support is tirely met. Though she suggests that her study background; but a group of leaders among of three demonstrations includes an examina - New York City’s public health nurses are the tion of racial differences, she gives short shrift central characterN s iu n rsing with a Message. to the project and the nurses located in an Af - D’Antonio describes their work as pr - oj rican American neighborhood. Her effort to ect administrators charged with addressing show how local families challenged the nurs - a community need for medical aid, and she es’ agenda is tantalizing but largely unrealized. brings to light their efforts to enhance the Furthermore, the geographic limits of her case role of the public health nurse. Through the study and the unique context of the 1920s clinics, public health nurses planned to teach confound her wish to use the story as a cau - constituents to utilize (and demand) pr -even tionary tale for demonstration projects fund - tive health care as well as medical services. The ed through the Affordable Care Act (2010). nurse leaders delivered this message of pr - even Nonetheless, Nursing with a Message is an in - tion by offering pregnancy-care services for sightful look at the relationship between social expecting mothers and preventive pediatric welfare and social medicine in the early tw - enti services for preschoolers (two groups not tar - eth century as seen through the experiences of geted by earlier public health efforts), by teach - professional nurses trapped between the two. ing the importance of preventive dental care, and by offering scientifically approved advice Kathleen W. Jones about nutrition. At the same time, these pub - Virginia Tech lic health nurses researched the value of health Blacksburg, Virginia prevention and utilized the demonstrations to doi: 10.1093/jahist/jax494 promote specialized scientific training for pub - lic health nurses. D’Antonio tells a complex Gertrude Weil:  Jewish Progressive in the New story of efforts to balance a commitment to South. By Leonard Rogoff. (Chapel Hill: U- ni community service with a commitment to the versity of North Carolina Press, 2017. xiv, 354 work of advanced education that would - gener pp. $35.00.) ate professional respect from the pantheon of medical professionals. In this new book, Leonard Rogoff examines Public health nursing lost its balance, the life of Gertrude Weil, a reformer from D’Antonio suggests, during the 1930s as foun - dation support was withdrawn. Nurse-admin - Goldsboro, North Carolina. Though today Weil is largely not remembered, Rogoff, in the istrators who had negotiated with physicians first full-length biography of her, offers a f - asci and with representatives of welfare agencies to represent the “message” of prevention, includ - nating and informative account that not only ing prevention of mental health problems, noe w xamines her activism but also effectively s - itu Downloaded from https://academic.oup.com/jah/article-abstract/104/4/1044/4932671 by Ed 'DeepDyve' Gillespie user on 16 March 2018

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The Journal of American HistoryOxford University Press

Published: Mar 1, 2018

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