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Welcome to LeaveNoNurseBehind.com

In the midst of a national nursing shortage, many nurses who can and want to work are being denied the opportunity. They are being pushed out of jobs and turned away from unfilled positions, all because they have disabilities.

Eleven nurses who defied disability tell their personal stories of courage and determination in the face of stigma and discrimination, proving that nurses with disabilities have the ability to successfully fill the jobs that so desperately need filling.

A car accident. A fall. A stroke. Depression. Disability can happen to anyone and at any time. By knowing the ins and outs of disability laws as they relate to those in the nursing profession and taking the measures outlined in this book, you can ensure that you will be prepared should disability ever happen to you.

This book serves as both an inspiration and as a practical guide for nurses living and working with disabilities and for students with disabilities pursuing careers in nursing. Nursing with a disability is a challenge, but with proper planning, the right knowledge and perseverance, it is not impossible. The nurses who share their stories here are living proof of that.

For hospital administrators, human resource personnel and nursing educators, this book demonstrates that shutting nurses and nursing students with disabilities out of the profession only does the profession and the patients who need them a disservice.

Let’s try not to leave any nurse who can work and wants to work behind. The cost to society of underutilizing the hearts and minds of these professionals is staggering.

About the Author

Donna Maheady, Ed.D., ARNP

Many parents of a child with a disability can “almost” walk in their child’s shoes. As a parent of a daughter who is significantly disabled by autism, mental retardation, OCD and seizures—Donna is one of those Moms.

Advocacy efforts surrounding her daughter’s life quickly took a turn to include nurses and nursing students with disabilities. Through her efforts, the secret is out— disability is part of life…even for nurses!

Donna graduated from the University of Bridgeport School of Nursing. She received a certificate as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, a MS in Nursing from the State University of New York at Buffalo, and an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from Florida Atlantic University.

She is a tireless advocate for inclusion of nurses with disabilities in nursing practice and founder of the nonprofit resource network for nurses and nursing students with disabilities called ExceptionalNurse.com.

Donna has conducted research on the experiences of nursing students with disabilities and published numerous articles on disability-related topics. She is the author of Nursing Students with Disabilities Change the Course and Leave No Nurse Behind: Nurses working with disabilities.

Pediatrics and developmental disabilities are her areas of special interest. She has been a faculty member in nursing education for over 25 years.

To learn more about Donna’s work and find information and resources for nurses and students with disabilities visit ExceptionalNurse.com.

Her book can be ordered from the ExceptionalNurse.com web site or from Amazon.com and other online booksellers.

Contact Dr. Maheady at ExceptionalNurse@aol.com


“Open skies, endless horizons, and freedom to fly. The cover of Leave No Nurse Behind illustrates the teamwork of birds who instinctively realize that it takes less work to fly in formation than it does to fly alone, and when one bird tires another bird will temporarily take the lead. The authors understand this premise, stating that instead of discriminating against tired/disabled nurses, nursing should realize their abilities and utilize their skills to fill gaps created by the nursing shortage. With the increasing international nursing shortage, this book serves to describe an innovative approach to lessen the burden of the nursing profession by employing disabled nurses.”

--Paula A. Stangeland, BSN, RN, CRRN
Family & Community Health (2008), 31, (4).

“The book presents an interesting oxymoron; nursing as a helping profession outright rejects those who fight to enter the discipline….Eleven different nurses describe the denial to accessing the profession that they admired and sought, the frustration, and their breakthrough to rediscover their own creative expression and professional engagement…. The authors provide an analysis of how professionalism and activism mesh to create something new; that is, the realization that it is possible for the person with a disability to be a health care professional.”

--Alice Tse, PhD, APRN, RN
The Review of Disabilities Studies: An International Journal (2008), 4, (3).

“When I started reading, I thought that this would be just another “nice” book about people’s abilities to overcome hardships. However, this book was about how the profession of nursing greets those with disabilities as their fellow colleagues—sometimes in an embracing manner, and other times shunning them. .. the soul searching I did after reading these narratives was what makes this text stand out from other literature about living with disabilities. The emphasis …is to focus on the “ability,” not the… (“dis”) in the term disability.”

-- Margaret Anne Brady, PhD, RN, CPNP
Journal of Pediatric Health Care (2007), 21 (1), 62-63.

“This book offers several examples of how nurses, with disabilities ranging from rheumatoid arthritis to depression, have successfully sought treatment for their conditions and then returned to nursing in new and creative roles. It inspires thinking about the ways to introduce nurses with disabilities back into a desperately short-staffed field, while taking into account their limitations, and offering inventive roles that not only benefit their patients, but also provide an opportunity for personal growth and improved self-esteem.”

-- Maria S. Romana, MSN, APRN-BC
Topics in Advanced Practice Nursing eJournal (2006), 6 (2).

Leave No Nurse Behind is well worth reading. It is a useful way of introducing nursing students to healthcare professionals working with personal disabilities.”

--Carol Singleton, Service Improvement Manager, Healthy Futures Programme
Nursing Standard (2006), 21 (13).


On-line Chat
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
8-10 pm EST

Florida Nursing Students Convention
Hilton Daytona Beach Resort/Ocean Walk Village
Daytona Beach, Florida
Thursday, October 30, 2008
1:30-2:30 pm

On-line Chat
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
8-10 pm EST

Radio Interview with Joyce Bender (Host)
Disability Matters [Internet Radio Program]
December 4, 2007
Voice America Channel

Florida Nurses Association Convention
Hilton Daytona Beach Resort
Daytona Beach, Florida
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
1:30-2:30 pm


Book Covers & Promotions
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· Back Cover Text
· iUniverse Promotional Flyer

Dr. Maheady's Other Books
· Nursing Students with Disabilities Change the Course