International Nurses Day: Nurses are considered to be God’s angels on earth. It was proved again in this pandemic. We all have seen and experienced the service of a nurse. Be it at a hospital, or at a nursing home, we always see them doing their service for those in need. It is a selfless job where the nurses keep aside everything and dedicate their lives to the needy ones.
As the pandemic raged on across the world, we got our new age heroes, the frontline workers – the nurses. We have seen in media and social media platforms several nurses breaking down due to the stress of handling the covid-19 infected patients. There were numerous articles and posts describing how difficult it is to be inside personal protective equipment (PPE) kit continuously for 8-9 hours and work. Nevertheless, these angels did it with utmost dedication to the well-being of the people and the betterment of society. Even if they were scared and confused about the virus, they had to overcome their anxieties and be with patients and console them. When the world was safe inside their homes, these warriors were in the field fighting and facing the pandemic so that we are safe. The stories of countless nurses staying away for weeks and months from their families to keep the latter safe from the coronavirus are heart-touching.
We cannot pass the day without remembering their struggles as the world is celebrating ‘International Nurses Day’ on 12 May 2022.
The British nurse and social reformer, Florence Nightingale is considered to be the founder of modern nursing hence her name has become synonymous with the nursing profession. Nightingale is revered across the world as the ‘Lady with the Lamp.’ The Crimean war was fought between 1853 and 1856 between Russia on one side and the British, French, and Ottoman Turks on the other side. Nightingale’s work for the wounded soldiers in this war gained her the name of the ‘Lady with the Lamp.’
History says that in 1854, Nightingale along with her 38 officially sanctioned women arrived at the Barrack Hospital to treat the wounded and sick British troops. American poet H W Longfellow enshrined Nightingale as the ‘Lady with the Lamp’ in his poem Santa Filomena.
Like how the world cannot forget Florence Nightingale, it cannot forget sister Lini. Sister Lini, sacrificed her life when the deadly Nipah virus hit the state of Kerala in India. Dr Veena George, the Health Minister of the state said, Lini’s life is an inspiration to all the warriors who serve the land during the covid-19 pandemic. In May 2018, sister Lini contracted the hard-to-diagnose Nipah virus from a patient she was dedicatedly attending to. She subsequently grew feverish and did not allow her husband or relatives to come near her as the virus was spreadable. She left behind her husband and two sons and died on 21 May 2018. Her story remains a painful reminder of how much sacrifices are involved in a nurse’s life.
This year’s theme for International Nurses Day is – ‘A Voice to Lead-Invest in Nursing and Respect Rights to Secure Global Health.’
Every year, India gives away National Florence Nightingale Award to nurses from the country. It is the highest national acclaim a nurse can achieve for exceptional professionalism and selfless devotion. Established in 1973 by the Union Health Ministry, the awardee gets 50,000 as a cash prize, a certificate, a citation, and a medal.
Similarly, the Florence Nightingale Medal is awarded to distinguished nurses for their service after Nightingale. It was established in 1912, by the International Committee of the Red Cross.
Wish you a Happy International Nurses Day!
Featured Image Source: Outlook India