Not All Heroes Wear Capes
It was 1860 when the first professional nursing establishment was founded by Florence Nightingale, a nurse who became renowned for drastically reducing infections and deaths among wounded soldiers in the Crimean War (1853-1856). Nightingale not only managed and trained battlefield nurses, but tirelessly roamed the wards at night, lamp in hand, comforting wounded soldiers, and even writing letters to home for them. She came to be affectionately referred to as “the Lady with the Lamp.”
Through her knowledge, skill, and unabating efforts, Nightingale revolutionized the practice of nursing, and was the impetus in it being regarded as a highly esteemed profession. Her eminence was often called upon from all over the world. During the Civil War, the United States Government consulted her about hospitals; and in India, concern over public health led to officials seeking out Nightingale’s advice and expertise. The books she wrote about hospitals and nursing are still read today by healthcare workers across the globe, over one-hundred years later. Florence Nightingale’s legacy is honored during National Nurses Week in May, observed specifically during the week of May 6 - 12, and concluding on Nightingale’s birthday, May 12, which is also International Nurses Day.
National Nurses Week, celebrated worldwide during the month of May, recognizes nurses, and their vital role in society. This week also aims to generate awareness surrounding the significance of the nursing industry, encouraging people to express regard and gratitude towards these hardworking professionals. This homage can inspire nurses with a renewed sense of dedication and purpose, as they are truly the backbone of the healthcare industry; and May offers many opportunities to show support and appreciation for the nursing profession.