Meet the Six Nightingale Awards Winners of 2020

A deep thank you to my friend and fellow writer Michele Murdock who sent me the first Star Nurses publication, which documents the collaborative effort between the Washington Post and the American Nurses Association (ANA) to nominate six nurses from across Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia who “go above and beyond.”

Hopefully, we will have more collaboration between the ANA or other nursing organizations and news media in order to spotlight nurses who make a difference. What a great way to educate the public about what nurses really do. As you can see, the six nurses selected for the first Nightingale Awards practice in diverse settings and have varied backgrounds. 

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WashPost PR Blog

The Washington Post and the American Nurses Association Announce the 2020 STAR Nurses Award Winners

By WashPostPR

September 2, 2020 at 1:51 p.m. EDT

The Washington Post and the American Nurses Association (ANA) announced the winners of the 2020 Star Nurses Awards, recognizing registered nurses in the Washington, D.C. area with the Nightingale Award for excellence in their field. The six winners, who were nominated by patients and peers and were selected by the American Nurses Association and a panel of fellow RNs, are recognized for their achievements across a range of criteria including compassion and positive community impact. Below is the list of 2020 Nightingale Award Winners:

The winners were announced last night at the STAR Nurses Awards Ceremony, and were featured in the Star Nurses Magazine, which features each nurse and their story. For more information on the program go to: www.starnursesdc.com

All Heart

Photo Credit: Reflections of Zion Imagery ©

A veteran registered nurse on the Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit at Winchester Medical Center, Lisa Dellinger is still passionate about her profession—and loves sharing her enthusiasm with new graduates. 

Lisa Dellinger, RN

“I like admitting hearts,” admits Lisa Dellinger, a Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit (CVICU) registered nurse (RN) at Winchester Medical Center in Winchester, Va. “We come together with procedural precision, and everyone knows their jobs without being told. That still lights a fire in me.”

Admitting a heart is the process of receiving a heart patient following surgery. These critically ill patients do not go to a recovery room. They come directly to the CVICU, where a team of healthcare providers ensures that all their lines and drips are accounted for and they are transferred safely.

“It’s like solving a puzzle,” Lisa added. “It’s a puzzle I can unravel, and I can keep my patients safe.”

From an early age, Lisa was always a problem solver. Although she dreamed of becoming a pediatrician, she knew she could not afford college. Instead, she joined the military and gained experience as a medical technician. It was during this time that she decided to become a nurse. “I realized that nurses get to spend more time with patients, so I knew I wanted to be a nurse,” she recalled.

Today, after 24 years in the field, Lisa is still passionate about nursing. In fact, she is most inspired when helping new graduates navigate the challenges of the profession.

“I love working with new grads. I love being able to pass on some of my knowledge—and hopefully some of my enthusiasm,” Lisa said. “I always tell new nurses that I would rather they ask me a hundred questions than do something to harm a patient.”

Lisa strives to teach new nurses what really matters. While she expects the nurses she mentors to be very attentive to the medical details of patient care, she thinks it is even more important that they get to know patients as people. Learning a patient’s personality can help nurses motivate them to get out of bed and get better, she explained.

“Ultimately, it’s our job to be our patients’ advocates—to be their voices,” Lisa concluded.

Lisa is a strong voice and an even stronger force. She is all heart.

A Big Voice for Small Patients

Photo Credit: Reflections of Zion Imagery ©

As a pediatric oncology nurse researcher at Children’s National Hospital, Pamela S. Hinds, RN, Ph.D., FAAN, helps young patients find their voice and make sure it is heard.

Pamela S. Hinds, PhD, RN, FAAN

Sometimes they want a back rub. They might want to chat about their fingernails. Most of all, they want to be heard. They are young cancer patients. And they have a strong advocate in Pamela S. Hinds, RN, Ph.D., FAAN, a nurse researcher at Children’s National Hospital.

Pamela performs pediatric oncology research that enhances patient outcomes and improves nursing practices. Over the course of her long career, she has had many emotional experiences with young patients and has really learned to listen to them.

“There are so many children whose faces and stories stay with me,” Pamela said. She recalled one young woman who had acute lymphocytic leukemia and experienced several recurrences requiring multiple bone marrow transplants. “I would end each day with a few quiet moments with her. It would soothe her so much when I would just rub her back,” she remembered.

Pamela also recollected a teen girl with a rebellious spirit and an extremely aggressive form of cancer. The girl tried desperately to find something positive. “She would say to me, let’s talk about the one part of my body that’s normal: my fingernails. So we would talk about her fingernails,” Pamela recalled.  

For Pamela, the diverse stories of the many children she has treated are what motivates her research. As the principal investigator for a number of federally funded grants, Pamela can amplify children’s voices to help them get better, more compassionate care.

“For many years, we didn’t ask children questions,” noted Pamela. “We never asked them what it was like to be receiving cancer treatment. We just delivered the treatment.”

Pamela and her team created a comprehensive set of questions to help care providers talk to—and understand—seriously ill children. The questions are now available for use across the country via the National Cancer Institute of the United States.

Speaking of the emotional challenges of her field, Pamela admits, “It’s very painful. But I believe in the power of love. And I see love every day—the love of a parent for a child, and a child for a parent, and also of staff to children and children to staff. That’s an amazing thing.”

That is amazing, and so is Pamela S. Hinds.

Starting (and Staying) Strong

Photo Credit: Reflections of Zion Imagery ©

As a school nurseViktoria Holley-Trimmer is responsible for the health and safety of every student in her building.

Viktoria Holley-Trimmer, MS, RN

You have to start somewhere. Good days start with a nutritious breakfast. Good students must first be healthy students. Viktoria Holley-Trimmer is making sure that students in the District of Columbia start healthy and stay healthy—as a D.C. public school Registered Nurse.*

“I always tell people that I didn’t choose nursing. Nursing chose me,” says Viktoria of how she came to the profession. During the nursing shortage of the 1980s, Viktoria was offered a full scholarship to attend nursing school. She took it, and she has never looked back.

At Francis Scott Key Elementary School in D.C., Viktoria is helping young people achieve their best possible health, so they can thrive as students. “The day in the life of a school nurse includes something new every day,” she said. “Kids are just so amazing.”

From bandaging scraped knees to coaching scared kindergartners to helping kids manage serious long-term illnesses, Viktoria is responsible for the health and safety of every student in her building. She also does regular education sessions with the children, teaching everything from proper hand washing technique to healthy eating habits.

A big part of school nursing is taking care of the broader community. And Viktoria is certainly committed to strengthening her community. Every year, Children’s National Hospital holds a cereal drive to provide breakfast options to underserved children during the summer months. Viktoria is one of the leading contributors.

“Last year, I collected more than 11,000 servings of cereal for children in D.C.,” said Viktoria . “I talked to the parents and the teachers and rallied them to the point where they brought me cases of cereal.”

Even with schools shut down due to the Coronavirus crisis, Viktoria is continuing to care for her community. She is currently working as a contact tracer for D.C., fighting the community spread of the virus one phone call at a time.

From her cereal drive efforts to her day-to-day work in the school, Viktoria is ensuring that children in the District know that someone cares—that someone is committed to giving them a strong start.

Quite a Journey

Photo Credit: Reflections of Zion Imagery ©

Cherissa Jackson is the Chief Medical Executive at AMVETS (American Veterans), a registered nurse, a veteran and a proud post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) survivor.

Cherissa Jackson, RN

Cherissa Jackson has covered a lot of ground. She traveled thousands of miles to complete her tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. Back at home, she has logged hundreds of miles running—in an attempt to outrun her post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). As the Chief Medical Executive at AMVETS (American Veterans), Cherissa is using her skills as a registered nurse and her personal experience with PTSD to help other veterans recover.  

As a single mom to twin daughters, a veteran, a nurse and a leader, Cherissa has overcome some major obstacles—but none has compared to PTSD.  Cherissa served 23½ years in the U.S. Air Force, many of them as a nurse. She served as a battlefield clinician in Iraq in 2005 and 2006 and in Afghanistan in 2011.

“I treated soldiers for PTSD. I knew the signs,” Cherissa recalled. “When I started experiencing some of those same symptoms, I hid in silence for five years.”

When her daughters left for college, Cherissa stopped hiding. “I had a PTSD break. I knew I had to get help,” she explained.

Years later, Cherissa has learned how to manage her PTSD. She uses a tried-and-true regimen of faith, meditation and exercise to keep her disorder at bay. Exercise is key. She said, “I tell people all the time that when I run, I sweat like crazy. That’s me purging those bad thoughts and feelings. That is me getting rid of what I experienced in Iraq and Afghanistan.”

Cherissa has shared her struggles with PTSD in several national magazines, and she wrote a best-selling memoir, “At Peace, Not in Pieces” about her experiences. “I strive to inspire others not to live in silence,” she said. “There is a way to be functional and not be ashamed to admit you have PTSD.”

When she joined AMVETS in 2019, Cherissa began running the organization’s HEAL program. HEAL, which stands for healthcare, evaluation, advocacy and legislation, aims to reduce veteran suicide, unemployment, homelessness and hopelessness by providing vital resources.

In addition to her work with HEAL, Cherissa is concentrated on elevating the issues that women veterans face. She created the Women Veteran Journey Map, an online tool that illustrates the unique experiences of women service members.

Cherissa may have suffered in silence for far too long, but she is sharing her journey with PTSD and advocating for other veterans now. She’s covered a lot of miles, and she is determined to leave markers to help those who follow.

Caring and Coaching

Photo Credit: Reflections of Zion Imagery ©

In addition to teaching, Jonas Nguh, Ph.D., RN, a professor of nursing at Walden University, is deeply committed to serving marginalized communities—and inspiring his students to do the same.

Jonas Nguh, PhD, RN

When Jonas’s phone rang in the wee hours of the morning, he was startled. The voice on the other end of the line was frantic, screaming, “Thank you, thank you!” Jonas Nguh, Ph.D., a registered nurse and professor of nursing at Walden University, inspires these reactions from his students.

The caller went on to explain that she was one of Jonas’s former students and that she had just passed her board exam to become a registered nurse. “She told me I was one of the only people who never gave up on her and that kept her going,” Jonas recalled. “She called me before she even called her husband!”

“It’s just amazing to me that I can use my abilities to improve the lives of others, whether that is the people in my community, my students or people around the world,” Jonas added. “I love working with people and for people.”

It is that genuine love of people that brought Jonas to nursing and that makes him such an accomplished educator. The youngest of five children, Jonas grew up in an impoverished community in Cameroon. He has three older sisters who are all nurses.

“I think I was born into nursing,” he said with a smile. “Now I get to prepare the next generation of health care providers.”

In addition to teaching, Jonas is deeply committed to serving marginalized communities—and inspiring his students to do the same. Jonas does several mission trips every year with his students or his faith community.

In 2010, following the catastrophic earthquake in Haiti, Jonas facilitated a hand washing initiative. Jonas and his students visited D.C. area hotels and collected the complimentary bars of soap left behind after guests checked out. They found a vendor to disinfect and repackage the soap. The class then delivered the soap to communities in Haiti where hygiene products were scarce.

“Sanitation is the first basic element to prevent infection,” Jonas said. “I’ve always been committed to looking for the little things that can help. This was practical and feasible, and it helped.”

Jonas is proof positive that little things quickly become big things in capable hands. Jonas is not just competent; he is gifted. And he is always willing to share his gift. “This is a calling, not a job,” he concluded of the nursing profession. “It’s a mission. It’s the whole purpose of my existence.”

Hearing and Healing

Photo Credit: Reflections of Zion Imagery ©

Sarah Rose, a registered nurse unit supervisor at Inova Alexandria Hospital, is committed to listening—and really hearing—patients and frontline nurses.

Sarah Rose, RN

Sarah Rose is a good listener. As a registered nurse unit supervisor at Inova Alexandria Hospital, Sarah makes sure that patients’ voices are heard and respected. She also ensures that the nurses who work at patients’ bedsides have a voice in shaping health-care policies and practices.

As a child, Sarah wanted to be a veterinarian. She loved animals, so it seemed like an obvious career choice. Her parents had other ideas. One summer, they convinced Sarah to volunteer at a local hospital. She was able to directly interact with nurses and patients on a daily basis. A new nurse was born.

“I always had a calling to help others, and this junior volunteer program allowed me to see how much nurses were helping,” Sarah recalled. “That started me down the path to become a nurse.”

When Sarah joined the staff at Inova Alexandria, it didn’t take long for her patients and co-workers to recognize her aptitude for caring. She received the hospital’s Nursing Excellence award in 2015, 2016 and 2019.  

Most recently, Sarah was recognized for her efforts to promote shared governance. Shared governance empowers nurses at the bedside to work with leadership to formulate policies and to express concerns drawn from their day-to-day interactions with patients.

After just two years as a staff nurse with Inova Alexandria, Sarah was promoted to unit supervisor in October 2016. Her unit provides step-down care for patients with serious cardiac issues.

“I strive to lead by example,” Sarah says of her role as supervisor. “I want to show new nurses that we can take the time to make personal connections with patients—to use the patients’ names and engage in small talk. Those simple connections make a big difference.”

Even when faced with difficult patients, Sarah remains dedicated to listening first. “It’s not just about letting them speak and then not hearing what they are saying,” she said. “You have to acknowledge what they are feeling. You acknowledge their concerns and then you explain what you’re able to do to help with the best possible outcome.”

Sarah listens. She pays attention. And she connects. By really hearing her patients and her staff, Sarah Rose is helping improve lives and enhance her profession. Sarah’s hearing promotes healing.  

Ramblings on Expanding Nursing Practice

 

 

I asked Martha Barry who worked with me at the Erie Family Health Centers in the early 80s, to remind me if the Certified Nurse Midwives delivered babies.

 Here’s what she said:

The model for the Certified Nurse Midwives (CNM) when I arrived was outpatient care only. The CNM did all of the New OBs and sorted out the high-risk patients and cared for the other patients throughout their pregnancies, post-partum and follow-up gyn care. Prenatal care was intense case management. (We took) a lot of care and time to be sure no one fell through the cracks and got “lost to follow up.” Luckily, we could utilize the community health RNs to help find patients who did not show up for a visit. At the beginning, Medicaid was not widely available to all low-income pregnant women and especially not to non-citizens. The patients would be on a payment plan and would need to pay by “7-months” and it was a deal that included their prenatal, postnatal and delivery costs. I remember patients bringing their money stuffed in their bras to pay up at that 7-month mark. Deliveries were at Ravenswood Hospital. I wish I could remember the cost. The consulting OB physician would come to Erie for a few hours each week.

I also remember a few patients who worked at the live poultry plant and they said that although they had no health insurance, the boss would pay their delivery fees! 

I was preparing for my talk to the first class of AdvancingPractice, a one-year fellowship to develop quality care and nursing leadership at the clinic I had worked in over 30 years ago and written about in my book: Stories from the Tenth-Floor Clinic: A Nurse Practitioner Remembers.

I read Martha’s words to the group of eight APRN Fellows especially showing the generosity of the poultry plant employer. Then I told the Pigeon Lady story from my book that ends with a neighborhood funeral home director footing the bill for the wake and burial of one of our patients. He then turned around and donated that amount back to the clinic. (It’s complicated) I wanted to stress the interrelatedness of the surrounding community on the health care clinic. 

Part of my presentation was to discuss the historical context of the advancement of nurse practitioners and nurse midwives (collectively labeled Advanced Practice Registered Nurses, APRN).

One of the handouts for the class (Expanding Access to Primary Care: The Role of Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants, and Certified Nurse Midwives in the Health Center Workforce, National Association of Community Health Centers, September 2013) plunged me back to the time I and other new APRNs in the Chicago area were struggling to justify our right to practice to the full extent of our training.

How much had I forgotten—maybe wanted to forget. For example, back in 1957 the American Nurses Association developed a definition of nursing that would retard the advancement of nursing practice for decades: nurses were neither to diagnose nor prescribe. And some groups of nurses called us “little doctors” and didn’t support developing educational programs in nursing colleges.  

I hope the new Fellows I spoke to learned from my presentation something about the historical context of the role, the significance of the role in the community setting and the potential of the APRN career choice. 

I close with a quote from the NACHC fact sheet:

An expanded role for nursing is an idea deeply rooted in nursing’s past and from it, much can be learned for today. Indeed, nurses should take this historical opportunity to think creatively about recycling elements of past practice for today’s unique context—perhaps initiating state-of-the-art nurse-run clinics in rural and inner city areas; reaching others by telenursing; and collaborating with designers in technology firms to create Apps and other high tech solutions to bridge gaps that exist in healthcare today. To do so, they must first read and understand the impact of the historical antecedents, cornerstone documents, and legislative acts that contribute to the nursing profession’s rich history. 

 

Expanding Access to Primary Care: The Role of Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants, and Certified Nurse Midwives in the Health Center Workforce, National Association of Community Health Centers, September 2013, Page 9


 

 

Happy New Year 2020

Frieda Paton, RN, a writer for Nurseslabs, an education and nursing lifestyle website geared towards helping student nurses and registered nurses with information for the betterment of their nursing careers, wrote the following in June, 2019:

WHO Confirms 2020 as International Year of Nurse and Midwife

Governments from around the world endorsed 2020 as the Year of the Nurse and Midwife during the World Health Assembly. The global celebration is in recognition of the indispensable role of nurses and midwives in bringing health care to people everywhere.

Spotlight on the role of nurses and midwives

In January this year, the Executive Committee of the World Health Organization (WHO) proposed that 2020 be designated as the Year of the Nurse and Midwife because of the vital contribution of nurses and midwives towards achieving universal health coverage. 2020 is also the 200th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale.

Member states endorsed the proposal during the 72nd World Health Assembly on May 24. This is the world’s most crucial decision making a body for health policy.

‘WHO is proud to nominate 2020 as the Year of the Nurse and the Midwife. These two health professions are invaluable to the health of people everywhere.” said Dr. Tedros Ghebreyesus, Director General of the WHO. ‘While WHO recognizes their crucial role on a daily basis, 2020 will be dedicated to highlighting the enormous sacrifices and contributions of nurses and midwives, and to ensuring that we address the shortage of these vital professions.”

Nursing Organization’s reaction

The idea of 2020 as Year of the Nurse and Midwife was initially suggested by the global, three-year Nursing Now campaign, which runs until 2020 in collaboration with the ICN and WHO. Lord Nigel Crisp, Co-Chair of the campaign, emphasized that rapid and cost-effective improvement in universal health care could be achieved by investing in nursing and midwifery.

“This is a once in a generation opportunity for governments to really show nurses and midwives how much they are valued,” commented Crisp. “Not by empty words, but by effective, decisive action to give us the human and physical resources needed to get the job done.”

Annette Kennedy, President of the International Council of Nurses, commended Ghebreyesus for supporting the idea of highlighting nurses’ contribution to healthcare and thanked the members of the WHA for endorsing this vision.

Florence Nightingale used her lamp to illuminate the places where nurses worked,” said Kennedy. “I hope the designation of 2020 as the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife will provide us with a new, 20-20 vision of what nursing is in the modern era, and how nurses can light the way to universal health coverage and healthcare for all.”

Every nurse can play their part

Within their individual circle of influence every nurse, across the world, can help to place the spotlight on their profession.

We will need to seize the opportunity of the Year of the Nurse and Midwife to communicate to decision-makers and the public alike who exactly we are and the vital contribution we make to society in the modern world.

 

72-World-Health-Assembly
World Health Assembly

 

Now it is up to us nurses to make the most of The Year of the Nurse and Midwife. From the American Nurses Association: “Nurses are encouraged to use #yearofthenurse and follow us on social media as we celebrate nurses in 2020. To stay connected throughout the year and join the celebration, click here.”

 

 

 

More on Nurses Week

I am reblogging this post from Lippincott Solutions. My non-nursing followers can read about the history of Nurses Week and the writers among us will be happy to see that Lippincott is asking for “Inspired Nursing Stories” for their annual writing contest.
Calling the Shots: Nursing News and Notes

CELEBRATE NATIONAL NURSES WEEK 2017

Tuesday, May 2, 2017
Mind, Body, and Spirit: celebrating nurses who lead the charge for health and wellness.

Are you ready for National Nurses Week 2017?

Honoring nurses for your hard work and dedication throughout the year, the American Nurses Association (ANA) will be celebrating its annual National Nurses Week from May 6-12, 2017.

ANA’s National Nurses Week 2017 theme — “Nursing: the Balance of Mind, Body, and Spirit” — celebrates nurses who lead the charge for health and wellness in their practice and profession. ANA has designated 2017 as the “Year of the Healthy Nurse.”

HISTORY OF NURSES WEEK

The ANA supports and encourages National Nurses Week recognition programs through the state and district nurses associations, other specialty nursing organizations, educational facilities, and independent health care companies and institutions.

Each of ANA’s state and territorial nurses associations promote the nursing profession at the state and regional levels. Each conducts celebrations on these dates to recognize the contributions that nurses and nursing make to the community.

National Nurses Week runs each year from May 6 to 12, ending on Florence Nightingale’s birthday. These permanent dates enhance planning and position National Nurses Week as an established recognition event. As of 1998, May 8 was designated as National Student Nurses Day, to be celebrated annually. And as of 2003, National School Nurse Day is celebrated on the Wednesday within National Nurses Week each year.

Nightingale, who lived from 1820-1910, was known as the founder of professional nursing, especially due to her pioneering work during the Crimean War. Due to her habit of making rounds at night, Nightingale became known as “The Lady with the Lamp.” National Nurses Week was first observed in 1954, the 100th anniversary of her mission to Crimea.

CELEBRATION PLANS

During National Nurses Week, celebrations and receptions will be held in hospitals and other healthcare facilities across the country.

ANA’s National Nurses Week Toolkit is a useful resource that provides you with additional ways to recognize nurses for their professional skills and abilities. For example, show your gratitude with a branded “Thank You Card.” Give every nurse a certificate of appreciation or hang display banners throughout the office. The National Nurses Week toolkit has plenty of ideas to plan a great celebration.

Nurses are encouraged to sign up for ANA’s free webinar, “A Nurse’s Guide to Preventing Compassion Fatigue, Moral Distress, and Burnout” on May 10 at 1:00 EST. During this one hour exclusive live event, Joyce A. Batcheller, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN, will discuss the latest research in the field and provide you with tools and strategies to infuse meaning, joy, and restoration into your practice and life. Batcheller is senior vice president and CNO of the Seton Healthcare Family, the largest health care system in Central Texas.

After attending, nurses will be able to:

  • Reduce the physical and emotional consequences of morally complex situations.
  • Build confidence in confronting morally complex situations to reduce moral distress and burnout.
  • Harness expert tips and strategies to build resilient teams.
  • Use current research to prevent and combat compassion fatigue.
  • Apply tools and strategies to recognize and overcome compassion fatigue.

PAYING IT FORWARD 

Once again this year, we are holding our annual ‘Inspired Nursing Stories’ writing contest.  What are your most memorable moments in nursing?  Have you had any poignant moments with patients and their families?  A mentor or preceptor that helped shape you into the nurse you are today?  Or was it a family member that helped you realize your calling to nursing at a young age?

Nurses, we want YOUR story!  The winning entry will receive a FitBit Alta, and the 1st and 2nd runners-up will receive gift cards. All of the top 12 stories will be featured in our 2018 Inspired Nurses: The Heroes of Healthcare glossy print calendars.

Click HERE to submit and help to ‘pay it forward’ by allowing other nurses to share in what keeps your nursing engine firing! You can also browse through some of our best stories from previous years to get your own ‘dose’ of nursing inspiration.

How are you planning to celebrate National Nurses Week? For all the official details from ANA, go to www.nursingworld.org/NationalNursesWeek.

Thanks SO much for all that you do, and best wishes for a terrific National Nurses Week!

Netflix Show Gets Aging Right

I am thrilled that the third season of Netflix’s Grace and Frankie is finally here. As one of the first gerontological nurse practitioners to be certified by the ANA back in the 60s and now a 70-something woman, I am depressed that the very same stereotyping and dismissal of the aged I first encountered is still happening.

I came across this article by Ann Brenoff who says, “Season 3 of the Netflix series gets a lot right—and it’s funny.”

Read what Brenoff says about the series and how Grace and Frankie attack the entrenched biases that are reflected by laws, business opportunities and interpersonal relationships in our social networks, including family.

Grace and Frankie

LIFESTYLE 

03/30/2017 03:37 pm ET

‘Grace And Frankie’ Totally Nails What It Means To Be Getting Older

Season 3 of the Netflix series gets a lot right — and it’s funny.

By Ann Brenoff

The Netflix original series “Grace and Frankie” came back with a vengeance for its third season. The story of two 70-something women who become unlikely friends after their husbands announce they are in love totally nails the aging experience in Season 3.

Here’s what it gets pitch-perfect. Of course, beware of spoilers.

  1. Banks don’t take older women seriously.

Grace (Jane Fonda) has a solid track record of launching and managing a successful business, but to the baby-faced banker named Derrick who she and Frankie (Lily Tomlin) approach for a 10-year, $75,000 business loan, she is unworthy.

Actually, it was probably a combination of their gender, their ages, and the fact that the product they want to sell is a lightweight vibrator for women who have arthritic hands. The very idea of older people having sex has been known to gross out some younger people. Note that Derrick closes his office door at the first mention of the vibrator.

As for age and sex discrimination, banks are regulated by the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, which prohibits discrimination on many fronts, including age and sex. But this is one of those cases where there is the law, and then there is the reality. The law does not require banks to make bad loans.

Banks live in fear of the four D’s: death, disability, divorce and drugs. That’s because the four D’s can lead to a fifth D: default. While things can happen to all borrowers, death and disability happen to older borrowers more often.

Plus, older business borrowers aren’t great guarantors ― especially if, like Grace, they’ve been successful and are smart. Successful, smart people generally know to tie up their assets in retirement plans or trusts, which creditors can’t touch. If the borrowers die or are disabled, the bank is left dealing with heirs, who know nothing about the borrowers’ business.

So it was no surprise that the banker Derrick blanched at the idea of making a 10-year loan to Grace and Frankie, who are both north of 70. Derrick was probably wondering whether they would survive long enough to repay the loan. Even the well-regarded Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation’s Index of Entrepreneurial Activity ― the bible for tracking trends in entrepreneurship ― stops counting at age 64.

Maybe the Small Business Administration needs to realize that people are living longer and healthier, and sometimes our second chapters could use some underwriting ― even when we start them a bit later.

  1. Dealing with the death of a parent is hard, especially one we didn’t much like.

Sometimes, we don’t succeed in resolving our issues with our parents before death slams shut the window of opportunity. Martin Sheen’s character, Robert, visits his elderly and very disagreeable mother to tell her that he has married Sol, the man she previously referred to as “the loud, tall Jew at the law firm.”

From her wheelchair in a well-appointed nursing home, she reacts with predictable disapproval, leaving Robert visibly crushed. The scene scores an additional point for realistic aging: Some of us never stop seeking parental approval, regardless of our age.

Without anything resembling kindness, the “Irish Voldemort” ― as Robert’s spouse Sol calls the tyrant mother ― attacks her son as a “selfish man.”

“I could have happily died never knowing that you were one of them,” she adds.

Caregiving is a tough and unreasonable job if there ever was one. And it frequently involves caring for a disagreeable parent ― even a parent who has harmed us and with whom we have a strained relationship. And then they die, leaving us wondering what else we could have done.

  1. We are scared of the R-word.

Retirement is a mixed bag of worries. Can we afford it? What will we do all day? Will we be bored?

Robert has retired and wants Sol to, as well. Sol insists he must still go into the office at least three days a week to “help Bud” run the law firm. It isn’t until Sol attempts to fire his quirky longtime secretary, Joan-Margaret, that he realizes it’s time for him to hang up his law shingle as well ― not because he’s ready to retire, but because Bud and the law firm need him to.

Most experts believe that solid retirement planning includes knowing how you will fill your days. The Institute of Economic Affairs, a London-based think tank, says that following an initial boost in health, retirement increases your risk of clinical depression by 40 percent, while raising your chance of being diagnosed with a physical condition by 60 percent. Lisa Berkman, a Harvard professor of public policy, cites social isolation as a significant factor in longevity. If you’re socially isolated, you may experience poorer health and a shorter lifespan.

  1. We don’t want to be a burden to our children.

Grace’s daughter, Brianna, in cahoots with Frankie, loans the business the money it needs. But she loses her status as secret benefactor a few episodes later, and Grace is enraged. “I don’t want my children’s help,” she says.

Not wanting your children’s help is a precursor to not wanting to be a burden. Same idea, and it’s real. Taking help from those who you are used to taking care of feels demeaning. If the parent-child roles haven’t legitimately reversed yet, don’t be like Brianna.

  1. Just because we are older doesn’t mean we are old.

After both women throw out their backs and can’t get off the floor, Bud gifts them high-tech wearable alert buttons that hang on a chain around the neck. Grace removes one of her high heels to smash the device. Frankie, who has an outlandish outfit that she says it will go with, wears hers to a business meeting, where she inadvertently activates it and alerts an ambulance to rescue her.

It’s a funny schtick, and both actresses pull off the comedy magnificently. But it also rings true when it comes to how adult children see older people. Can we please hold off on the Granny-cam?

  1. All marketing is geared toward youth and sex.

Vybrant’s proposed new business partner hopes to woo Grace and Frankie with a peek at a proposed ad campaign. It features photos of the two of them ― but when they were 20 years younger. Yes, even a product designed for older women is afraid to show them.

Grace and Frankie hold their ground.

About 10,000 people a day turn 65. And pretty soon, there will be more older people than younger ones. More to the point: Boomers have more disposable income than any other generation, but they still can’t even find a box of hair coloring where the model even remotely looks like them.

According to a Nielsen study, by the end of 2017, boomers will control 70 percent of the country’s disposable income. Nearly 60 percent of homeowners over 65 are not weighed down by mortgages, compared with just 11 percent of 35- to 44-year-olds. And boomers account for 80 percent of America’s luxury travel spending, says AARP.

  1. Yeah, some of us do still actually chase our dreams ― and occasionally catch them.Frankie’s art show opening may not have been a rousing financial success, but she rightfully deserves the victory lap she takes for having done it. And kudos to her for giving away the yellow painting that represented Sol’s dislike for mustard. Let bygones be bygones.

Chasing your dreams is something you hear a lot about when you reach the end of your working years. Second chapters, next acts ― whatever you want to call it ― it means following your passions and making the time to do whatever it is you want to do, which for us is finishing watching Season 3.