Why Do We Celebrate Nurses May 6th through May 12th?
Nurses are an integral part of the healthcare system as they provide essential care and support to patients. Every year, Nurses Appreciation Week is celebrated from May 6th to May 12th to honor and recognize the nurses’ dedication and hard work.
In this blog, we will explore the history and importance of Nurses Appreciation Week, the role and history of the American Nurses Association, and take a look at the upcoming celebratory events in the CSRA.
Who Is Florence Nightingale?
National Nurses Week begins each year on May 6th and ends on May 12th, which is Florence Nightingale’s birthday. Florence Nightingale was a British nurse and social reformer widely regarded as the founder of modern nursing. She was born in 1820 in Italy and grew up in England.
Nightingale became a nurse in 1851 and served as a nurse during the Crimean War in 1854. During her time in the war, she observed the deplorable conditions in which wounded soldiers were treated. She implemented strict hygiene practices, and her efforts significantly reduced the death rate from infectious diseases.
After the war, Nightingale returned to England and continued to advocate for the importance of sanitation and hygiene in healthcare. She wrote extensively on healthcare issues and is widely regarded as one of the most important figures in the history of nursing.
To formalize nursing education, Nightingale established the Nightingale School of Nursing at St. Thomas’ Hospital in London, which was the first scientifically based nursing school. Furthermore, she contributed to setting up training for midwives and nurses in workhouse infirmaries.
The History of Nurses Appreciation Week
Nurses Appreciation Week has been celebrated annually in the United States since 1954, when it was observed for the first time from October 11th to October 16th, and the year of the observance marked the 100th anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s mission to Crimea.
In 1981, the American Nurses Association (ANA), along with various other nursing organizations, rallied to support a resolution initiated by nurses in New Mexico to have May 6, 1982, established as “National Recognition Day for Nurses.”
In February of 1982, the ANA Board of Directors acknowledged May 6, 1982, as “National Nurses Day,” and subsequently, the United States Congress designated May 6 as “National Recognition Day for Nurses.” In March 1982, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed “National Recognition Day for Nurses” to be May 6, 1982.
In 1990, the ANA Board of Directors declared May 6–12, 1991, National Nurses Week and designated these dates as permanent in 1993.
The Role and History of the American Nurses Association
The American Nurses Association (ANA) is a professional organization that represents the interests of nurses in the United States. The ANA was founded in 1911 and has since played a key role in advocating for the rights and interests of nurses. The ANA has been instrumental in advancing nursing as a profession, promoting nursing education, and advocating for safe and effective patient care.
Over the years, ANA has been sustained by the spirit of solidarity and action. Some of its most outstanding contributions to the legacy of the profession include lobbying for an eight-hour working day in 1934, supporting the Fair Pay Act in 1995, endorsing a five-year study for all phases of nursing in 1950, and establishing its own credentialing center in 1990.
Since 1896, the American Nurses Association (ANA) has supported and promoted the nursing profession. At the state and local levels, the nursing profession is promoted by each of the state and territorial nurses’ associations of the ANA. On these days, celebrations are held in every state to honor the contributions that nurses and nursing make to society.
The National Nurses Week Recognition Programs are supported and encouraged by the American Nurses Association (ANA) in collaboration with state and district nurses’ associations, other specialty nursing organizations, educational institutions, and independent healthcare organizations.
The Importance of Nurses Appreciation Week
Nurses Appreciation Week provides an opportunity to recognize and celebrate the contributions that nurses make to the healthcare system. The majority of nurses work 12-hour shifts with few breaks, frequently taking on extra work as needed. Nurses frequently find themselves working through holidays and significant family events because healthcare is a 24/7/365 operation.
Also, Nurses Appreciation Week educates the public about the important role that nurses play in the healthcare system. Many people are not aware of the extensive training and education that nurses receive or the range of services that they provide. Nurses are licensed healthcare professionals. Their wide range of tasks includes assisting doctors during treatments and surgeries, performing vital tests, making care decisions, and educating patients about their health. Nurses work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and schools.
Nurses Appreciation Week is also a great opportunity for nurses to come together and celebrate their profession and accomplishments.
At Scrubs of Evans, we want to express our sincere appreciation to nurses in the CSRA community for all their hard work and dedication to delivering high-quality patient care. As a quality medical uniform store with a diverse selection of scrubs, we have served the CSRA community for over 12 years and have a great team to meet your needs.
Call us at 706-364-1163 to learn more.