Each year, the celebration of Nursing Week draws attention to nurses, increasing the awareness of the many contributions of nursing to the well-being of patients and families.
“I am in complete admiration of our nurses’ courage, dedication to patients and the teamwork they so naturally bring to caring for patients and each other,” said Meaghan Sharp, Interim Chief Nursing Executive at our Hospital. “Even during this time of physical distancing, nurses still provide the human connection patients need to help them heal as they navigate illness and the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
During the week of May 11-17, Nursing Week will be celebrated at our Hospital to recognize the vital contributions nurses make to the delivery of quality patient care in Thunder Bay and across Northwestern Ontario.
Nurses are vital to our Hospital’s front line response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to their direct patient care roles, many have taken on additional duties and responsibilities to help protect the health and safety of the community. Nurses are screening staff and patients at Hospital entrances, leading the testing at our Hospital’s COVID-19 Assessment Centre, and learning new skills and techniques to safely work on the dedicated COVID-19 Care Unit.
“As a society, we all depend on the resilience of nurses — their ability to deal with very demanding responsibilities, sometimes handling the most incredible situations, and still return the next day or night, to be as caring all over again, notwithstanding the circumstances,” said Jean Bartkowiak, President and CEO of our Hospital and CEO of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute. “We rely on their clinical excellence and their ability to care with compassion and professionalism. I encourage everyone in our community to join me in thanking our nurses for their incredible contribution to positive patient outcomes.”
The World Health Organization (WHO) has designated 2020 as the International Year of Nurses and Midwives. This year also marks the 200th birth anniversary of the iconic nurse, Florence Nightingale. She became known for her work in caring for casualties during the Crimean War and her visionary advancement for the nursing profession.
Building on that special recognition by the WHO and the impact of COVID-19 on the current health care landscape, Nursing Week gives nurses across the world the chance to celebrate the important work they do on the frontlines in hospitals, long-term care, public health and many different organizations, keeping people healthy and caring for them when they are ill.