March Awareness Days Week 5: Honoring Nurses

April 8, 2021

National Doctor’s Day is celebrated March 30, 2021; however, we could not think of honoring our doctors without also giving a shout out to our nurses who are often unappreciated and their hard work goes unnoticed and sometimes overlooked. The COVID-19 pandemic has placed a strain on our health care system. While International Nurses Day is celebrated on May 12 every year, we are honoring our nurses alongside our doctors to let them know that they too are very much appreciated!

National Nurses’ Day was organized annually by the International Council of Nurses. International Nurses Day celebrates the contribution that nurses make to societies around the world. The date has a very strong significance, as it is the birthday of perhaps the world’s most famous nurse, Florence Nightingale. (1)

According to an entry in the biography of the Encyclopedia Britannica, Florence Nightingale was born May 12, 1890 in Florence, Italy. She was a British nurse, statistician, and social reformer. Florence spent many hours in the hospital wards and her night rounds giving personal care to the wounded is what established her image as the “Lady with the Lamp.” Nightingale’s efforts to formalize nursing education led to the establishment of the first scientifically based nursing school, the Nightingale School of Nursing. Nightingale was also instrumental in setting up training for midwives. The International Nurses Day observed annually on May 12, commemorates Nightingale’s birth and celebrates the important of nurses in health care.(2)

Nurses, like doctors, are some of the most hardworking, sacrificing workers. Even before COVID-19, nurses worked tirelessly often on weekends, holidays and overtime. They spend hours on their feet and always have a smile when they check on a patient. These selfless health care workers are not interested in the limelight but in helping others. You are encouraged to show your favorite nurse(s) how much you appreciate them. Below is a list of ideas to show your favorite nurse(s) appreciation:

1. Thank-you card.
2. Gift baskets filled with fruit, healthy snacks, or a candle, CD with soft music, etc.
3. Plant or flowers delivered to the nurses’ station.
4. Gift certificate towards a comfortable pair of shoes or gel inserts since nurses spend so much time on their feet.
5. Gift card to a coffee shop or lunch.

Just be creative! In these challenging times during the pandemic, your favorite nurse will love the thoughtfulness and appreciate whatever kind gesture you make. Beloved while we have focused on nurses in this article, I recognize there are many other health care workers and medical staff who also touch lives every day: Nursing assistants, home health care workers, first responders, etc. These simple but practical meaningful ways of showing appreciation will make your favorite nurse(s) or home health care worker, medical staff and/or first responder feel valued.

Sources:

1 https://www.awarenessdays.com/awareness-days-calendar/international-nurses-day-2021/

2 Britannica Encyclopedia at: https://www.britannica.com/biography/Florence-Nightingale

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Next Month: Alcohol Awareness Month