MADISON, Wis.—Wear a Mask For You. For Us.

The Nurses of Wisconsin is a group of nursing associations that have come together to identify strategies for supporting nurses during this unprecedented pandemic. Wisconsin continues to experience an increase in hospitalizations for patients with COVID and for other conditions requiring extensive nursing care.

Only 17 percent of hospital beds remain available in Wisconsin. With this limited capacity, patients in need of hospital care may not be able to be admitted to hospitals. One significant variable that determines bed availability is having enough nursing staff to care for these very ill patients.

The supply of nurses continues to be comprised. Nurses are out sick or recovering from COVID, they may be in quarantine because of exposure, and in the very near future, nurses will be deployed to administer vaccinations against COVID. The past eight months have resulted in a continuous and constant demand for nurses. The demands are impacting the physical and psychological health of these smart and caring nurses. They are exhausted, overwhelmed, and anxious. This is not a good scenario for providing quality nursing care.

The solution to fortifying the nursing workforce is simple, according to the organization. Slow down the spread of COVID. The sooner we can minimize the spread of COVID the sooner we will see business opening permanently, with a healthy employed workforce, hospital bed availability, reduced fear of COVID exposure, and more healthy and resilient nursing workforce.

The group states, we need a critical mass of individuals wearing face masks. Wisconsin statistics show that we have not achieved this. The Nurses of Wisconsin want to thank the residents of Wisconsin for wearing their masks and are begging those who have not worn mask to start today. Please do not let freedom of choice take precedence over the health and safety of your family, co-workers and your neighbors

Please wear a mask. For you. For us, the group states.