Happy Nurses Week!
Nursing Week is a time to recognize the year-round dedication and achievements of Registered Nurses (RNs), Registered Practical Nurses (RPNs) and Nurse Practitioners (NPs), and to increase awareness of their contributions to the well-being of Canadians.
This year, Nursing Week runs from May 7th to May 13th and the theme is #YesThisIsNursing.
The theme, which was created by Alliah Over, RN, MN, of Newmarket, Ontario, was selected by Canadian Nurses Association in 2017 and has been carried over for 2018.
The week draws attention to nurses, increasing the awareness of the public, policy-makers and governments of the many contributions of nursing to the well-being of Canadians.
In 1971, the International Council of Nurses (ICN) designated May 12th, the birthday of nursing pioneer Florence Nightingale, as International Nurses Day. Florance Nightingale is best known around the world as the “Lady with the Lamp” who nursed British soldiers during the Crimean War and turned nursing into a profession. But she was also much more than that.
She was an activist, social theorist and author who’s advocacy to improve health and sanitation for British Army soldiers, and writings on hospital planning and organization, laid the foundation for nursing’s emphasis on the social determinants of health today. Nightingale published more than 200 books, reports and pamphlets.
In 1985, Canadian Nurses Association members passed a resolution to begin negotiations with the federal government to have the week containing May 12th proclaimed as National Nurses Week annually. Soon after, the federal minister of health proclaimed the second week of May as National Nurses Week. In 1993, the name was changed to National Nursing Week to emphasize the profession’s accomplishments as a discipline.
Nursing Week gives nurses across the world the chance to celebrate the work they do to keep Nightingale’s work alive by advocating for policies that keep people healthy, and care for them when they’re ill.