116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
Over 100 Iowa medical students from University of Iowa and Des Moines University have signed on in support of a federal bill: the Dr. Lorna Breen Health Care Provider Protection Act. We have sadly lost physicians and medical students to suicide, including Dr. Lorna Breen.
Lorna was an emergency room physician, caring for countless COVID-19 patients in New York before contracting COVID-19 herself. Lorna recovered and returned to the front line, but the sea of patients was overwhelming. Despite all of Lorna’s services, she had no support systems to turn to for her mental health and took her life on April 26, 2020.
Lorna’s passing served as the impetus for the bipartisan bill, the Lorna Breen Act. The bill is the first of its kind in addressing mental health of health care workers. The bill takes important steps forward, including a national education and awareness campaign, a federal research study focused on mental health in health care workers, and grants directed for mental health training and programming for health care providers.
We are thankful to Rep. Cindy Axne for co-sponsoring the bill, and we ask Reps. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, Randy Feenstra, Ashley Hinson, and Sens. Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst to support this important bill helping our health care workers.
Medical student, University of Iowa
Medical student, Des Moines University