International Nurses’ Day is celebrated on 12th of May each year. We all are understanding the importance of the nurses due to this pandemic but the influence of the nurses can be seen from the prehistoric era. But their importance and hard work remained unsung and the profession of nursing was regarded as low as the untouchables. When a girl from an aristocratic family came forward to dedicate her life for this noble service, people scorned her but she was strong enough to face all the odds and one day came to be known as ‘the lady with a lamp’. Here I am talking about Nurse Florence Nightingale. There are so many other devoted ones too. Today I am going to cite some of them who changed our lives to a great extent with their innovative ways of treatment which are still applied till date.
Let’s start with Nurse Florence Nightingale-
She introduced sanitary practices in the Crimean War (1854). She took good care of the health and hygiene of the wounded and infected soldiers.
Australian Nurse Elizabeth Kenny introduced movement and physiotherapy to the patients suffering from polio in 1939.
In England in the 1950s, most infants died due to jaundice. A nurse called Jean Ward came to their rescue by introducing Phototherapy.
During the Ebola outbreak in 2014, a student nurse, Fatu Kekula came to look after the patients by guarding herself with available materials like garbage bags and duct tape. She improvised the ‘trash bag method’ that allowed her to look after her family members and other patients without getting affected herself.
We can relate today’s scenario of Covid 19 with its fatal variants to those AIDS epidemic days of 1983 US. Like our Covid-19 patients, those patients were also isolated and quarantined and were left to die alone. At that time, only some brave nurses embraced them and held their hand and let them die peacefully.
Even now when the Covid patients are away from their family and relatives there are only the nurses along with doctors to look after them. We get tired of looking after our own kids and they have to care for hundreds of critical patients at the same time. Nurses are happy with their patients’ recovery and sad to witness their sufferings.
I pay a tribute to all the nurses across the world from the bottom of my heart. I am sure that we will come over this pandemic with the help of the caring nature of our nurses. Happy Nurses’ Day!!!!