GI Nurses and Associates Week: Highlight A GI Nurse Hero March 21-27

March 22, 2021 •

Gastroenterology nurses have extraordinary “Super-Powers.” They can diagnose a GI bleed and C.Diff. with just a slight whiff of the nose! Although the GI nurse profession may not always be a glamorous one, with the increased incidences of GI cancers and GI tract issues, it is highly in demand.

This Year’s Theme is Honoring and Celebrating Community.

Normally, you might see a nurse toasting a patient with a colonoscopy prep. But this week nurses will be toasting to celebrating their community.

March 21-27 is Gastroenterology Nurses and Associates Week. The Society of Gastroenterology Nurses and Associates (SGNA) are encouraging all GI nurses to share words of inspiration and small acts of kindness with their teams of fellow GI nurses. SGNA is empowering it’s GI nurses and asking them to share stories and highlight a GI nurse hero, who has inspired them through a very challenging year.

SGNA, How It All Started

SGNA was founded in the summer of 1972 by Marna L. Shirmer, RN after she attended a national American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) meeting where she noticed several women wearing “non-member in training” badges. She acquired a badge herself and reached out to several of the women and asked if they would like to network and share ideas related to the GI profession. They formed a steering a committee with 300 people on their mailing list. In 1977, the group launched a medical journal: Gastroenterology Nursing.

Today SGNA has over 8,000 members, who enjoy a plethora of industry educational resources, practice and certification resources, scholarship opportunities, events and more.


The life of a GI nurse is extraordinary. On a day to day basis, GI nurses are dealing with patients who have debilitating illnesses and cancers of the stomach, esophagus and bowel. GI nurses mainly assist with patients undergoing endoscopy and colonoscopy procedures and also deal with pre and post op education of patients.

The GI nurse’s role is in a state of constant evolution and offers substantial autonomy compared with other nurse professions. Nurses are performing endoscopies independently. GI nurses are also able to perform cutting edge therapies like Fecal Microbiota Transplantation (FMT).

After 2 years of GI nursing practice, both Associate Degree Nurses (ADN) and Bachelor’s degree nurses can become certified through The American Board of Certification For Gastroenterology  Nurses and must demonstrate clinical competence, procedural skills along with moral and ethical behaviors as evidenced in the clinical setting.

Is GI Nursing Calling Your Name?

Frederick Nietzsche said it best: “If not for stools man would fancy himself God!” And if it weren’t for GI nurses, well, patients would be at a severe loss. If you are looking to transition from another nursing specialty, or you’re a newbie nurse looking for an autonomous challenge, GI nursing offers all of that and so much more. Learn more about gastroenterology and all that a GI nurse can do.

GI nurses and other healthcare professionals require insurance to safeguard their careers. At NOW Insurance we offer simple, fast and affordable professional liability insurance. Learn more about nurse insurance and get an immediate quote from our online application.

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