By Hadas Kuznits

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A Hillary Clinton surrogate made a Philadelphia appearance on Wednesday on her behalf. Howard Dean met with the Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals at a Democratic campaign office in North Philadelphia.

Registered nurse Patricia Eakin, president of the local nurse’s union, says they met with former Democratic presidential hopeful and doctor Howard Dean in support of Hillary Clinton.

“The goal of the roundtable was to have a forum where we announced that our union, PASNAP, is endorsing Hillary Clinton for president,” Eakin explained, “and to have a roundtable discussion about healthcare and other issues with Howard Dean.”

“I wanted to thank the nurses for their endorsement,” Dean said. “Nurses are some of the best public servants in the country and the all work really hard and they show up and they vote, so for them to endorse Hillary is really a big deal.”

Dean heard from the nurses about their healthcare system concerns.

“I was interested in the emphasis on mental health,” he said. “I think that’s a problem that’s gotten much worse over the last 10 or 15 years, partly because, particularly under George W. Bush and previous Republican presidents, services were cut back.”

Eakin says she’s hopeful their concerns will get back to the Democratic presidential nominee.

“I think it was pretty clear that nurses would like the government to make healthcare a priority, to treat it as a human right and not as some commodity to be bought and sold for Wall Street and for high executive salaries.”

Hadas Kuznits