International Nurses Day – Today and Every day
“The definition of a nurse: To go above and beyond the call of duty. The first to work and the last to leave. The heart and soul of caring. who will pass through your life for a minute and impact it for an eternity. An empowered individual whom you may meet for only a 12-hour period, but who will put you and yours above theirs.” – Unknown.
History of International Nurses Day and This Year’s Theme
International Nurses Day (IND) is celebrated around the world on 12th May every year, to mark the amazing work and contributions nurses make to society. Nurses have and always will be the heart of the healthcare system. They have been working day and night to save people’s lives. And this is not only during the times of pandemic! Yes, we are able to see it better now as this is where the spotlight is. However, it’s always been the case and that’s why we annually celebrate their achievements and compassion globally.
The date 12th May is not randomly chosen for the IND. It is the birth date of the remarkable nurse Florence Nightingale. Founder of modern nursing, Nightingale is a British nurse and social reformer who left a big mark in the history of nursing. Nightingale was put in charge of nursing British and allied soldiers in Turkey during the Crimean War. She spent many hours in the wards, and her night rounds giving personal care to the wounded established her image as the “Lady with the Lamp.” She has also established the first scientifically based nursing school – the Nightingale School of Nursing, at St. Thomas’ Hospital in London.
For this year’s International Nurses Day the theme is:
Nurses: A Voice to Lead – A vision for future healthcare
It aims to show how nursing will look into the future and transform the next stage of healthcare.
How is International Nurses Day celebrated? In the UK, there is a service held each year in Westminster Abbey in London where a symbolic lamp is passed between nurses until it reaches the Nurses’ Chapel in the Abbey where it is then placed on the High Altar. This symbolises the passing of knowledge from one nurse to another. Last year the Abbey turned itself NHS blue for nurses’ tribute. What the last year has shown us is that nurses would prefer if we don’t gather in groups and follow the pandemic regulations. Therefore, it is safe to say that a great way to pay a tribute to their hard work is to stay at home and stay safe! We can always support them online!
Being a Nurse in the Times of Global Pandemic
It’s been more than one year since the global pandemic has been announced.
More precisely for the UK – 23rd March 2020 – the day when the national lockdown was officially announced. The lives of all people have been changed since then. But let’s look at the situation realistically. While most of the people have the chance to get on a furlow and stay at home or work from home, others do not have the options. While some people are complaining about not being allowed to go to their favourite pub, others just want to get home after shifts without worrying that they might be infected with the virus. And why might they be infected? Because they were bravely fighting against the virus to save people’s lives. They are the committed healthcare professionals, and especially the front line warriors – the nurses!
The pandemic opened our eyes about the importance of the nurses. It also showed us their reality. We have been able to see and hear emotional sharings and heart-breaking stories from their side. What we are unable to feel, though, is the actual stress and burnout of the nursing profession. On one hand they deal with the pandemic, on the other hand the retention and shortage of staff.. Do you think you can ignore this pressure in your everyday life? Of course, no. It affects both your work life and consequently your personal life. Nurses’ mental health has been severely affected in the past one year. The constant fear, the increase of fatal cases despite their hard work and care – all these factors build up. They deserve more than applause. The commitment and bravery of the nurses deserves acknowledgement and celebration year long.
From the Nurses to the World
The “Lady with the Lamp” has made a good start in modern nursing development. Nightingale’s legacy laid the groundwork for the heroic work in hospitals today. Nowadays nurses are using their smart phones instead of lamps to ‘lighten up the road’. We see eyes opening sharings from their side. Some of them tell stories from personal experience, others share medical facts and advice. But what is most important – they all try to make the world a better place with less people who are ignorant about important issues. This could save lives just like the nurses themselves do on a daily basis in the hospitals. Transparent, open and 100% genuine they use 12st century technology in the best way possible to make a difference. Their social media channels show the truth behind the life of a nurse every day and we really need to listen and take notes!
Happy International Day to our favorite Nurses on Social Media
Undeniably the pandemic has been pretty stressful for the nurses. Sara is pointing out some of the Covid related issues she’s been facing during the peak in January. ‘Seeing through my eyes..’ post makes us think about how many things that are happening in the nursing world we can’t actually see. Maybe if we were able to feel them personally, we would not be that ignorant about it, right?
The relief of the measures against Covid-19 had a negative effect a couple of times now. Yes, we all want to go back to normal. Eloise probably wants this even more. However, what she is trying to explain with her post is that the normal life will come after we all do our part in stopping the spread. Instead of running into the local pub the day the restrictions are lifted, people could actually think about the consequences. The virus does not go overnight and we should all start thinking in perspective.
The working experience of the student nurses have been quite different in the past year than usual. Thrown in at the deep end? Just keep swimming! This is the situation for the student nurses who are just beginning their nursing journey. We must admire their ambition and bravery! The kick start of their nursing career might be really tough but it will give them great preparation and skills for the future!
They don’t ask for applause and show light. As nurse Morgan is saying, simple acts of kindness and appreciation like smiling are enough to brighten up the day of a nurse!
Thank you, dear nurses! You really are one of a kind – caring, compassionate and committed to your job. You have dedicated your lives in the medical field and helping others and we are so very grateful for that choice. During these hard times of global pandemic we pray for you to come through safely and to be with your families who also need. Know that you are being prayed for every day by millions of people!
If you liked our blog, you might also enjoy reading about the International Midwife Day which was a week before the International Nurses day. We are very happy to also connect with 6 male midwives who shared their touching stories with us – Life of a Male Midwife Part 1 and Part 2.
Mylocum provides wide ranges of opportunities in different locations where you can find your desirable night shift. Check out the vacancies here and pick the one that suits you. Mylocum is also my CV Library