Year 2020 had a rough start due to the coronavirus pandemic and the sufferings are still on. While people are locked inside their houses to keep themselves safe from COVID-19, there are people working day and night. These are the nurses and health workers who are dedicated to their duty and contributing to wash away the deadly coronavirus.
International Nurses Day is marked on May 12 every year. This day is celebrated in order to honour the health workers and nurses all over the world. Nurses have many roles in communities and health care facilities; they provide personal care and manage treatment, work with families and communities, and play a central part in public health and controlling disease and infection. It includes the promotion of health, the prevention of illness, and the care of ill, disabled and dying people.
On the occasion of International Nurses Day 2020, let’s remember the greatest nurses of all time:
- Florence Nightingale
Founder of Modern Nursing (1820 to 1920) The history of modern nursing started in 1849, when Florence Nightingale began her first formal nursing training at the Institute of St. Vincent de Paul, in Alexandria, Egypt. After further trainings in Germany and France, she voluntarily served as Superintendent at the Establishment for Gentlewomen during Illness in London. The knowledge and skills Nightingale gained from these experiences equipped her to take the challenges intending to the British military victims when the Crimean War broke out in 1854.
- Clara Barton
Founder of American Red Cross (1821 to 1912) Clarissa Harlowe Barton was a teacher when her feet directed her to tread the more risky life of bringing supplies right in heart of battlefields during the American Civil War, wherein she was rightfully known as the Angel of the Battlefield. Clara’s nursing journey and philanthropic life dawned amid the dark Baltimore riots, organizing a relief program for the soldiers. The need for medical supplies was huge and advertising for donations greatly helped.
- Dorothea Dix
Brain of First Mental Asylum in the U.S. (1802 to 1887) Dorothea Lynde Dix was not an excellent nurse in the very sense of nursing. However, the reputation as a famous nurse was earned by her fearless fight for the right of the mentally ill in front of Massachusetts legislators and the United States Congress. Dix found herself in this battle due to her passion for teaching. She saw with her own eyes the dismal conditions of the mentally disabled people when she entered the East Cambridge Jail to teach Sunday class for women inmates in March 1842. Dix immediately brought the matter to courts, wherein she won many battles using careful and extensive data of extreme conditions in jails and almshouses, getting these poor individuals improved states.
- Margaret Sanger
Founder of Planned Parenthood (1879 to 1966) Margaret Louise Higgins blamed the premature death of her mother to the frequent pregnancy, the result of what she viewed as a grim class and family heritage. Nursing became her door to liberation from this big family tradition. As she worked as a visiting nurse, Margaret, who was then married to William Sanger and a mother of 3, became attracted to women’s pain of frequent childbirth, miscarriage, and abortion. She sought to liberate these women from the unwanted pregnancy by advocating for the practice of birth control.
- Elizabeth Grace Neill
Started the System of Nursing Registration (1846 to 1926) Elizabeth Grace Campbell Neil received her nursing education at St. John’s House Sisterhood in London. She spent her early nursing career as a lady superintendent at the Pendlebury Hospital for Children in Manchester, where Ms. Campbell met her husband Channing Neil. She left England for Australia in 1886, and then, treaded a life of a journalist and various government commissions for almost 10 years in New Zealand beginning 1891. She was a determined nurse with a stethoscope on her neck at all times.