A special editorial by the Kalinga Health team in honour of the International Nurses Day

Every year, on the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s (aka, the founder of modern nursing) birth on the 12th of May, we celebrate International Nurses’ Day as a means of honoring the contributions of nurses to our society. To do our part, we at Kalinga made up a list of reasons why nurses are so awesome!

  • Nurses help calm patients down – Going to the hospital can be a very stressful situation but nurses can help people feel more at ease by being patient and kind. Singing or engaging patients are just some ways nurses can make (and have made) patients more comfortable through their hospital stays.
  • Nurses are very patient-centered – Doctors are great, but nurses tend to spend more time with patients so they can get to know patients better than the GPs. This gives nurses a unique, personal insight on how to advocate for the patients, and makes them perfect partners for doctors in the treatment process. Also, sometimes even when patients are intimidated by doctors, they’ll approach nurses with their concerns and questions, which nurses can explain in simpler terms, or relay to the physician.
  • Nurses aren’t afraid to deal with blood or bodily fluids – Admit it, many people will get squeamish at the idea of blood or any manner of body fluids and germs, but not nurses. Or at least, they won’t show it and handle situations involving these with finesse and skill. And they’re so used to it, they won’t judge patients about these because nurses understand the pain and suffering their patients must be feeling.
  • Nurses sacrifice a lot for their profession – Shifting and tightly-packed schedules are common for nurses, so there are times that they’ll have to miss out on a full night’s rest, proper mealtimes, holidays, and family time – among other things. It can be honestly be very frustrating, but the very best nurses understand that they have to train their focus on helping patients get better.
  • Nurses can help the elderly and persons with disabilities maintain independence – Many seniors and other individuals with concerns with mobility rely on private duty nurses to help them at home. Having the assistance of nurses in daily tasks like taking medication, bathing, preparing food, and more, means that the older adults and persons with disability can live more independently at the comfort of their own home instead of in hospitals or facilities.
  • This year’s International Nurses’ Day theme: “Health is a human right” – As if the reasons above aren’t enough, nurses are also advocates for healthcare accessibility. Isn’t it amazing that they’re using their special day to champion the very important cause of making sure that everyone, everywhere can get medical care? (You can learn about this year’s theme here on the International Council of Nurses’ toolkit.)

There are, of course, so many more reasons why nurses are so important and awesome and if you’ve ever been helped by a nurse, you’ll probably want to thank them. Here are a few ways you can do so on International Nurses’ Day (or any other time, really)

  • A thank you card – It seems obvious, which is why you should do it if you haven’t already. Everyone loves knowing that their hard work is seen and felt and nurses are no exceptio
  • Send a little pick-me-up snack to the nurses’ station – Nurses are all too-familiar with long, tiring hours but sometimes they don’t have time to sit down to a full meal. A box of snacks they can nosh on or a few large coffees to go around will be well-appreciated
  • Treat them with respect and kindness – This goes without saying, but if you have a nurse who’s patient, compassionate, attentive, and helpful, give them the value and respect they deserve. It’ll remind them that the long hours of back-breaking work are all worth it.

To all nurses, THANK YOU and HAPPY INTERNATIONAL NURSES’ DAY from your friends at Kalinga! We appreciate all that you do!

If you’re looking for a private duty nurse or a caregiver to help out with a patient at home, or if you’re a nurse or carer with some skills, patience and of course, care to provide a home-based senior or person with disability, sign up with Kalinga today!