Today I interview the amazing Andrea Dalzell, aka the Seated Nurse.
Andrea Dalzell is a registered nurse, healthcare advocate, disability rights influencer, speaker and most importantly, a survivor. At the age of five, Andrea was diagnosed with transverse myelitis, an inflammation of the spinal cord that causes pain, muscle weakness and paralysis, and she was using a wheelchair full-time by twelve years old. Inspired by her experiences with nurses, she received her nursing degree from the City University of New York, College of Staten Island. Andrea became the first registered nurse in a wheelchair in the state of New York, and she devotes her career to helping others with disabilities live healthier lives whether seated or able-bodied.
Andrea was crowned Ms. Wheelchair New York 2015, and utilized her title and platform: “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Access,” to promote her message and belief that people with disabilities can live a fulfilling life. As an advocate and activist, she has won national recognition over the years, including being named New Mobilitiy’s Person of the Year (2021) and the inaugural Craig H. Neilsen Visionary Prize Winner 2020. She has also been featured in Unite Spinal, HomeCare Magazine, Apple’s iWatch campaign, Yahoo, and Forbes.
On today’s show we talk about Andrea’s story and her nursing journey. After 1500 job applications and 75 job interviews, it took a global pandemic to get the break she needed to work bedside. What a story! You will want to tune in for this!
Also, Andrea shares how hospitals and nursing programs could be doing better. Hint: We could be doing better.
Want to get involved? Check out the National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities.
Thanks so much for being on the show, Andrea!
Stay Safe and Stay Sane,