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The International Nurses Council (ICN), a federation of more than 130 nation nurse associations representing millions of nurses around the world, commemorates International Nurse Day every May 12. This date coincides with the birth of the “Pioneer of Modern Nursing”, Florence Nightingale on May 12, 1820. 

Florence Nightingale was an important person who gave a huge transformation to the world of nursing. Back in the 18th century, the world of nursing was disreputable because hospitals were dirty places and female nurses worked like “slaves” that were treated arbitrarily especially by men. Therefore, Nightingale changed the image of the nursing world by reviving the concepts of hospital hygiene and nurses’ tips. In addition, she also built a nursing school and wrote a book “Notes on Nursing” which became a curriculum reference in her nursing school and is used in nursing education until nowadays.

ICN carries the theme “Nurses: A Voice to Lead – Nursing the World to Health” on International Nurse Day 2020. This theme is carried out in appreciation of nurses’ struggles and hard work in order to provide good health services. This year is a special year because the World Health Organization (WHO) designed 2020 as “The Year of Nurse and Midwife” and commemorated the 200th anniversary of Nightingale’s birth. ICN plans to coordinate a series of events throughout the year to celebrate this momentum. In addition to the commemoration event, one of the major events is the WHO publication on the “State of the World’s Nursing Report” which contains a detailed description of nursing staff and campaigning for the “Nightingale Challenge” to produce new leaders in the world of nursing.

In a report published by WHO, it highlighted that there is important progress that has to be carried out by the government and policyholders in each country to:

  1. Invest a massive acceleration in nursing education, such as the faculty of nursing, infrastructure, and the number of students. It aims to meet global and domestic needs, and respond to the challenges of advanced technology in health and social care.
  2. Create at least 6 million jobs for nurses by 2030, especially for poor and developing countries to fulfill the need for the shortage of projects and the unequal distribution of nurses. 
  3. Strengthen nurse leadership, both current and future nurses to ensure that nurses have important roles in health policy formulation and policy decisions, as well as contribute to the effectiveness of the social and health care system.

Happy International Nursing Day 2020! Let’s deliver high-quality Future Nightingale!

Writer: Ardina Ulya
Editor: Iqmi Qaisah

Translator: Mazidatun Maftukhah