The theme of International Nurses Day 2020, which is marked annually on 12 May, is ‘Nursing the World to Health’, which aptly highlights the true value of nurses to the people of the world
Around the world, the coronavirus pandemic is compared to being like a battlefield with health workers as the frontline soldiers in the war against this disease. The efforts of Qatar’s healthcare staff, those on the frontline and those supporting them, are at the heart of combating the effects of the virus. It is fitting, therefore, that on International Nurses Day 2020, Hamad Medical Corporation’s (HMC) leadership team is taking this opportunity to acknowledge the important work of nurses across the health sector and particularly in their response to the coronavirus (COVID-19).
“This public healthcare crisis has demonstrated the amazing talent, perseverance, and willingness of all our nurses to deal with the myriad of challenges and stresses they are being confronted with on a daily basis,” said Dr. Salih Ali Al Marri, Assistant Minister for Health Affairs for the Ministry of Public Health in Qatar. “They have been able to adapt and deal with an unprecedented workload in their efforts to helping save lives; that includes facing a heightened risk of contagion from coronavirus while ensuring the ongoing management of resources and treatment to patients, wherever they are in the healthcare system.”
“The Ministry of Public Health, in partnership with HMC and the Primary Health Care Corporation, has made a huge investment in making certain the country has a plan to deal with the pandemic. I am incredibly proud of the leadership and commitment that our nurses have shown in a situation that is quickly changing and unrelenting; challenging their resilience and testing all their skills of caring and compassion in the most difficult of circumstances,” added Dr. Al Marri.
Each year, the International Council of Nurses (ICN) leads the global celebrations to recognize the efforts of nurses in delivering care to people in need. International Nurses Day is traditionally held on 12 May, the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth and despite the limitations imposed by the battle against coronavirus, this year’s celebrations will still be extra special because the World Health Organization (WHO) has designated 2020, which is also the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth, as ‘The Year of the Nurse and Midwife’.
ICN selected its theme for International Nurses Day for 2020, “Nursing the world to health” in October 2019, when very few could have imagined the fate of the world only a few months later. Dr. Nicola Ryley, Chief Nursing Officer at HMC commented on the prophetic impact of this theme.
“I have witnessed many challenging situations during my career but never before have I seen the mobilization of healthcare efforts on a scale as large and in such a limited time frame as the one we have had to arrange to respond to the pandemic in Qatar,” said Dr. Ryley.
“I am delighted how well our nursing teams have stepped up to deal with the challenges of this pandemic. In dealing with the threat of COVID 19 and in ensuring our other essential health services remain available, nurses from different nationalities, specializations, ages and experience have worked together as part of a wider collaboration with other health professions and our external partners to achieve the very best for the people of Qatar,” Dr. Ryley added.
The effort includes the work of HMC’s Nursing and Midwifery and Workforce Departments that have assured that nurses on the front lines are appropriately skilled and deployed to achieve the outcomes needed. This has helped enormously in ensuring our readiness to deal with the situation. To date, over 1,122 nurses, including existing and newly hired staff at HMC, have received important COVID-19 related training to equip them to provide a high standard of care and support the care to patients across all COVID-19 facilities.