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RCN celebrates profession by showcasing ‘surprising’ things nurses do

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The Royal College of Nursing is showcasing the wide and wonderful variety of nursing roles and encouraging everyone to share stories of exemplary care as part of this year’s International Nurses’ Day celebrations.

The college said it was keen to promote some of the more “surprising” things nursing staff do such as working at music festivals and in prisons, as well as devising healthcare policy and taking vital nursing support to far-flung places for the event, which is held every year on Florence Nightingale’s birthday – 12 May.

“It’s important we celebrate the valuable contribution nursing makes to people’s lives in the UK”

Ben Cooper

While many outside the profession associate nursing with more obvious aspects, such as delivering hospital care, the college said it wanted to show there was no “one size fits all” career path and that nurses were leaders and innovators, who helped transform people’s lives in the UK and overseas.

Ben Cooper, an advanced charge nurse and emergency care practitioner in Sheffield, is among those whose nursing career has taken them to unexpected places.

He has volunteered for Edale Mountain Rescue Team in the Peak District for twenty four years and has worked for an Antarctic expedition company.

“Nursing has got me to the South Pole,” he said. “It’s important we celebrate the valuable contribution nursing makes to people’s lives in the UK and around the world.

“My career as a nurse has opened many doors and I encourage anyone wanting to become a nurse to consider the amazing career opportunities available to them,” he said.

“I am able to influence healthcare improvements in the UK and across the globe”

Sue Smith

Meanwhile, Sue Smith, deputy chief executive and executive chief nurse at University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust is the co-founder and director of a charity that provides education and training to healthcare staff in Cambodia.

“Through my work at Morecambe Bay and for Transform Healthcare Cambodia, I am able to influence healthcare improvements in the UK and across the globe,” she said.

“Nurses are team players, we make things happen,” she said. “It is a privilege to support the development of tomorrow’s nurse leaders here and in Cambodia.

“Over my career I have worked alongside some incredibly inspirational nurses – Nurses’ Day is a fantastic way to celebrate their achievements and nurses around the world,” she added.

As part of the Nurses’ Day festivities, the RCN is encouraging nurses to take to social media and use the hashtag #ThisNurse to share inspirational stories of colleagues who have gone the extra mile to provide care and examples of situations that reminded them why they are in nursing in 2018.

RCN chief executive and general secretary Janet Davies said International Nurses’ Day was an opportunity to celebrate the wide variety of nursing and the huge difference it makes.

“Nurses’ Day is a wonderful way to celebrate the incredible work nursing staff do every single day of the year”

Janet Davies

“Nurses’ Day is a wonderful way to celebrate the incredible work nursing staff do every single day of the year,” she said,

“There is no ‘one size fits all’ rule for nursing staff,” she said. “They work across every health care setting and have innovative and diverse roles nurses within health care teams.

“Across the country you will find nurses who lead on healthcare policy, help their communities and transform people’s lives – what they all have in common is their dedication to delivering outstanding patient care,” she added.

For more information about Nurses’ Day go to the RCN website. www.rcn.org.uk/nursesday

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