In my Editorial for the 10.6 issue (November/December 2018), I wrote about the global Nursing Now Campaign. If you recall, the 3-year Nursing Now Campaign (2018–2020) is a product of the International Council of Nurses and the World Health Organization and is designed to “improve health globally by raising the profile and status of nurses worldwide—influencing policymakers and supporting nurses themselves to lead, learn and build a global movement” (www.nursingnow.org/vision/). I outlined how the Journal of the Dermatology Nurses' Association (JDNA) goals were in alignment with the efforts of this global campaign by “helping to achieve their second goal of increased and improved dissemination of effective and innovative practice in nursing” (Borger, 2018) and reviewed how the JDNA has been committed to serving as the voice of dermatology nursing practices. At that time, I let readers know that the Nursing Now Campaign would run through 2020, a year when nurses would be celebrated worldwide.
Well, fast-forward to now, 2 years later, the campaign has continued, and we find ourselves in the middle of 2020, the Year of the Nurse and Midwife as designated by the World Health Organization. This designation and international campaign, in honor of the anniversary of Florence Nightingale's 200th birthday, has been planned as an end-cap to the Nursing Now Campaign. A highlight for this year is the State of the World's Nursing Report, which describes the state of the nursing workforce worldwide. This report, the first of its kind, was officially launched on April 7, 2020, World Health Day, in Geneva, Switzerland, before the 73rd World Health Assembly (https://www.who.int/hrh/nursing_midwifery/19093_The-State-the-WorldsNursingReporStateWorldsMidwifery2020Report.pdf?ua=1). The intention of both the Nursing Now Campaign and the State of the World's Nursing Report is to provide a framework for ongoing conversations about nursing contributions to healthcare, on a global basis.
Granted, much of the impetus for these programs stemmed from the needs of nursing and nurses in developing countries, but there is still much to be done in developed countries as well. For example, in the United States, Nursing Now USA is addressing workplace violence, pay equity, staffing shortages, and barriers to practice (https://www.myamericannurse.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/ant6-President-513.pdf). Raising the profile of the nursing profession is essential for our ongoing recognition as an important part of the healthcare delivery team. Nurses' education, knowledge, and efforts must be recognized and appreciated, because we play an integral role in the well-being of our patients. In an article by the International Council of Nurses, Nursing Now Executive Director Dr. Barbara Stilwell says: “Nurses are ready for this moment—2020 is the chance to show what nurses can do to improve health for everybody, everywhere” (https://www.icn.ch/news/2020-international-year-nurse-and-midwife-catalyst-brighter-future-health-around-globe). I agree. Now is the time for nurses to showcase our contributions.
The ANA Enterprise, a family of organizations composed of the American Nurses Association, the American Nurses Credentialing Center, and the American Nurses Foundation, plans to “celebrate Year of the Nurse by engaging with nurses, thought leaders and consumers in a variety of ways that promote nursing excellence, infuse leadership and foster innovation” (https://www.nursingworld.org/news/news-releases/2019-news-releases/ana-enterprise-gears-up-for-global-year-of-the-nurse-in-2020/). As a way to help showcase nurses' efforts, the annually recognized National Nurses Week, usually May 6–12, is being extended this year to a month-long celebration, to engage a diverse range of nursing roles and experiences, and to celebrate our various contributions. So, in light of this effort, I am asking readers to consider sharing your stories and your experiences. How do your contributions make a difference? I am inviting dermatology nurses to share with your colleagues your unique perspective. I invite you to write a Letter to the Editor for JDNA and share your thoughts.
What else can you do to join in the efforts to acknowledge and celebrate the contributions of nursing? Be a voice in your workplace and with your colleagues. Have discussions about 2020 Year of the Nurse and Midwife and what it means to both your organization and the individual nurses. Discuss what celebrating nursing means for patients and patient care. Consider being politically active on the part of your profession. Are there any Dermatology Nurses' Association members running for elected office? We'd love to hear your story about why you decided to get involved. What about having representation in your local, state, or national nursing organizations? I know many of these groups would love to have passionate, engaged nurse leaders and would welcome your participation. For those who are inclined to use social media, you could start using the following in your posts:
You might notice the front cover of this JDNA issue; each issue in 2020 will have the banner to show recognition by Wolters Kluwer for 2020 Year of the Nurse. Lippincott also has developed a page on NursingCenter (https://www.nursingcenter.com/journals-articles/article-collections/2020-year-of-the-nurse-and-midwife), which offers a comprehensive resource for those who are interested in more information or in reading articles that highlight Year of the Nurse and Midwife. You will find resources focused on four themes:
- Lifelong Learning
- The Changing Healthcare System
- Whole Person Care
- Nurses as Leaders
This content will “spotlight the role that nurses and midwives play in improving health.” Please join me in revisiting this Web site throughout the year to look for new contributions.
Finally, I like to share with you one of my most recent, and personal, contributions to celebrating nurses and nursing in 2020. I have a family member with a complex and complicated medical history who was recently hospitalized several times over an 8-week period. As many of you can imagine, living in a small but rather rural area means the hospital is smaller, as is the staffing. This meant that each admission brought us back to the same floor, with many of the same caregivers. Each time, the staff welcomed my family with concern but also smiles and provided excellent care. After recuperating from a little caregiver-type fatigue, I knew I wanted to recognize one of the nurses especially. I am sure many of you are familiar with the DAISY Award, which was started in 1999, and is an acronym for Diseases Attacking the Immune SYstem. This award was started by the family of Patrick Barnes after he was diagnosed with idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, and it aims to “provide on-going recognition of the clinical skill and especially the compassion nurses provide to patients and families all year long” and serves as a thank-you to nurses everywhere. Furthermore, they state, “Through this and other recognition programs, we honor the super-human work nurses do for patients and families every day” (https://www.daisyfoundation.org/). I nominated Nora Rodgers, RN, who, for several hospitalizations, gave excellent care to my entire family, not only the patient hospitalized. In the DAISY nomination for her, I wrote, “…she exemplified characteristics of an exceptional nurse whose care helped changed the trajectory of both his physical health and our collective emotional health.” I know my actions are infinitely small and personal, and through this nomination, I am not influencing governmental, state, or even institutional policy. However, hopefully, I am making a difference to one nurse, because I know she made a big difference to us. And is not that what 2020 Year of the Nurse and Midwife is really all about?
As always, I am looking forward to hearing from you.
Angela L. Borger
Editor in Chief
Borger A. L. (2018). Nursing now and the dermatology nurse. Journal of the Dermatology Nurses' Association
, 10(6), 273–274.
Key dates for nursing and midwifery discussions in May 2020
. World Health Organization. https://www.who.int/hrh/news/2019/2020year-of-nurses/en/
. Accessed February 16, 2020.
What is the DAISY Award?
The DAISY Foundation. https://www.daisyfoundation.org/daisy-award
. Accessed February 16, 2020.