Nurses around the world will be celebrating International Nurses’ Day today, 12 May, the anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale.
The International Council of Nurses, which started the event unofficially back in 1965, has chosen the theme of this year’s Nurses’ Day as Nurses: A Force for Change: Care Effective, Cost Effective.
“Nurses’ Day is a great opportunity for nurses and patients to truly celebrate their vocation”
Meanwhile, in the UK, the Royal College of Nursing has chosen the theme #WhyInurse, and encourages members of the profession to get involved via the social media site Twitter.
The ICN said its global theme reinforced the fact that global health cannot be achieved without the participation of nurses at “all levels” of the healthcare system.
“Nurses and policy makers must focus on the nursing role as a key priority and determinant for achieving equity, delivering universal health coverage and ultimately improving health outcomes globally,” stated David Benton, ICN chief executive.
“Nurses are well positioned to drive improvements in efficiency and effectiveness,” he said.
The ICN’s toolkit for International Nurses Day provides guidance for nurses and policy makers on how to best achieve equitable access to effective and affordable healthcare services.
The tools, information and ideas for action contained in the kit will assist and encourage nurses and national nurses associations to become engaged in and knowledgeable about health system financing as a means to achieving quality of care and patient safety in a cost effective way.
It includes examples from around the world, which demonstrate what is possible when nurses bring their creativity and professional perspective to the transformation agenda.
The RCN said its theme was intended to “encourage nursing staff to share the reasons why they do their jobs and what they enjoy most about nursing”.
Peter Carter, RCN chief executive and general secretary, said: “Nurses’ Day is a great opportunity for nurses and patients to truly celebrate their vocation and the huge difference they make to the lives of millions of people worldwide.
“These are challenging times for nurses so it is great to return to the heart of nursing and reflect on the very special reasons why nurses do what they do,” he said.
The RCN will also be celebrating Nurses’ Day 2015 with a special public lecture, on Wednesday 13 May.
A force for change: What is the modern nurse? will be chaired by BBC Health Correspondent Jane Dreaper, alongside an expert panel including Jane Cummings, chief nursing officer at NHS England.