In honor of the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale's birth, the year of 2020 has been declared the “year of the nurse and midwife” by the Executive Board of the World Health Organization (WHO).
Nightingale was an English social reformer, statistician and the founder of modern nursing. She is the reason nursing changed from a mostly untrained profession to a skilled and well-respected profession. She was devoted to preventing disease and ensuring safe and compassionate treatment for the poor and suffering and helped make modern nursing what it is today.
Organizations around the world are using this occasion to put the spotlight on nurses and the nursing profession. With this recognition of nurses’ valuable contributions to health care, the American Nurses Association Enterprise will promote the wide engagement of all nurses to celebrate and raise the visibility of nursing.
Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director-general of WHO states, “nurses are the bridge of healthcare, a crucial link between the people of the community and the complex healthcare system.”
What Does This Mean for Nurses?
Designating 2020 as the year of the nurse will not only show appreciation for the hardworking individuals who make up the profession but also promote a higher level of education and advancement for nurses, while emphasizing the need to prioritize improved conditions in all healthcare environments.
The American Nurses Association (ANA) and American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) both state that, “As the largest group of health care professionals in the U.S. and the most trusted profession, nurses are with patients 24-7…They practice in all healthcare settings and are filling new roles to meet the ever-growing demand for health and health care services.” They are to continue to increase an understanding of the value of nursing to expand education, practice and research.
From encouraging others to use the hashtag #yearofthenurse on social media to having a National Nurses Week from May 6 to May 12, the ANA and ANCC are working hard to give nursing recognition.
If you are interested in utilizing your skills to become a nurse, consider enrolling in a RN to BSN or a BSN Pre-Licensure degreee. If you want to advance your career as a nurse, consider earning a MSN or DNP.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University.