From its earliest beginnings, nursing has embraced a holistic view of health. What we eat, the environments in which we work and live, our social relationships—all these influence health. Yet, as nurses, many of us shy away from looking at the big picture; instead we narrow our focus, addressing only the immediate problems of this patient, this family. It’s true that many patients treated in hospitals or outpatient clinics are there only for a short time. But how will such patients and their families fare in the long run if they lack access to public transportation to get to their follow-up appointments? How can patients recover from illness when they must choose between paying the mortgage and filling prescriptions?

That’s an excerpt from “Voices Rising,” the editorial in the January issue of AJN by Shawn Kennedy, editor-in-chief. We hope you’ll take a moment to read the whole thing and give it some thought.

Also in the January issue, you’ll find plenty of reading suggestions in the AJN 2011 Book of the Year Awards; a CE on the causes, diagnosis, and management of hypothermia; and a great deal more, including a feature, “Cardiac Catheterization Through the Radial Artery,” that advocates the use of the transradial artery rather than the femoral artery for cardiac catheterization in certain situations.—JM, senior editor