Happy international Nurses Day

Today, we’re saying thank you to nursing staff everywhere for the remarkable contribution they make to the lives of millions of people. 

International Nurses’ Day is celebrated around the world each year on 12 May, the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth. This year in particular it’s an extra special occasion because not only does it fall during International Year of the Nurse and Midwife, it also marks the 200th anniversary of Nightingale’s birth. 

With Florence Nightingale’s 200th birthday falling during the COVID-19 pandemic, the reforms she fought for feel more relevant than ever.

Every year, on 12 May, we mark International Nurses Day. It’s not just a celebration of nursing, it’s also the birthday of one of the world’s most famous nurses, Florence Nightingale. We knew 2020, two centuries since her birth, would be a big occasion. But with the COVID-19 pandemic highlighting similarities between Nightingale’s experiences and those of nursing staff today, it’s taken on new significance.

Nightingale was named after her birthplace – Florence, Italy. Her parents were influential, upper-class, and gave her a thorough education. A talented mathematician, she was also drawn to caring for the sick in her family and community.

To read more about Florence please visit the RCN Bulletin here.