International Nurses Day is celebrated around the world every May 12, the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth. You can find information about Florence Nightingale on the Florence Nightingale International Foundation (FNIF)website and the Girl Child Education Fund.
As the largest health care profession in the world, there is no doubt that nurses are key to the achievement of the Development Goals. Nurses are often the only health professionals accessible to many people in their lifetime. So nurses are particularly well placed and often the most innovative in reaching underserved and disadvantaged populations.
Nurses are educated to understand the complex nature of maintaining health and wellness, and the impact of psychosocial and socio-economic factors such as poverty, unemployment and ethnicity.
They see the context for wellbeing and accordingly act in way to reach beyond the immediate presenting problems.
Nurses have done much towards the achievement of the MDGs and to help shape and deliver sustainable goals and outcomes beyond 2016. And we can be proud of our achievements. Yet there is still more that we can – and must – do.
Nurses must engage in advocacy and lobbying. We must be involved in the development of any programme introduced to improve health services as it is nurses who have the practical knowledge of how health service delivery can be designed, coordinated and effectively implemented.
National nurses associations have an important role to play in informing, advising, encouraging and supporting nurses in their work. NNAs must continue to work with governments and others to strengthen health systems and create the conditions necessary to maximise the contribution of nurses.
The International Council of Nurses commemorates this important day each year with the production and distribution of the International Nurses’ Day (IND) Kit. The IND Kit 2016 contains educational and public information materials, for use by nurses everywhere.
The IND theme for 2016 is : Nurses: A Force for Change: Improving health systems’ resilience.
International Council of Nurses