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2017 International Nurses Day (#IND2017); Echoing The Voice Of leading By Bilyaminu Bala Yahya
Date Posted: 12/May/2017
The International Nurses Day (IND) is a day anointed by the International Council Of Nurses (ICN) to be celebrated around the world on the 12th of May 12, the anniversary of Florence Nightingale's Birthday. 
Each year a theme is chosen by the world supreme council of nurses to focus the attention of nurses in each and every part of the globe. The theme for this year's IDN celebration is "A VOICE TO LEAD-ACHIEVING THE SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS". 
It is a well-chosen and timely theme for the year 2017 especially now that the attention of the world is on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 
The goal 3 of the SDGs states "Good Health and Well-being" which is aimed to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages. Nurses can play a greater role in achieving the stated goal by acting as a voice that can lead. A voice that can make a difference and help shape decision-making processes and healthcare policies. 
Since the time of Florence Nightingale the world acclaim Mother of modern Nursing to the contemporary Nurses are known to be a voice of the voiceless. They serve as a voice for the terminally ill patients, mentally illed, the aged,the children and the disabled. Nurses convey the healthcare needs and interest of these categories of human beings during the decision and policy making process. 
An excellent decisions and policies on health that reflect the needs and interest of all categories of human beings is indispensable to good health and wellbeing. Nurses need to make their voices heard and participate actively during policy making consequent of the current neglect of the rights and need of the vulnerable groups particularly in developing nations. 
To lay  emphasis on this, the president of the International Council Of Nurses (ICN), Dr Judith Shamian has this to say "Never has there been a time when the voice of nurses are more urgently needed at high levels of policy formation and decision-making than they are now. 
To ensure the achievement of the SDGs and make health a reality for billions of people across the globe, we need confident,well-informed nursing leaders who understand their critical role and contribution". This year's IDN campaign is designed to increase nurses' understanding of the SDGs and their significance, and how millions of nurses around the world are already contributing to achievement of these global goals. 
In addition, nursing local and national associations should organize lectures and conferences for nurses on methods and strategies their voices can lead toward achieving the SDGs specifically Goal 3. On this important day, there is need to pay a tribute to one of the greatest creature in human history and heroine that ever lived on earth. Florence Nightingale sacrificed her life and all that she possessed for the modernization of nursing practice and education. She brought respectability and recognition to the profession when it is neglected and considered a slave and people of low social class job. Florence Nightingale gave hope to those were hopeless. She served as a voice to those who were voiceless. 
As a result of the candid and selfless care she rendered to wounded soldiers during the Crimean war making rounds at night she earned  the nickname "The lady with the Lamp". In 1860, Nightingale laid the foundation of the professional nursing with the establishment of her nursing school at St. Thomas' Hospital in London. It is the first nursing school in the world. 
In recognition of her pioneering work in nursing, the "NIGHTINGALE PLEDGE"  is taken by new nurses. The Nightingale pledge is similar to the Oath taking by medical doctors and pharmacists during induction ceremonies. Nightingale was a prodigious and versatile writer. In her lifetime, much of her published work was concerned with  spreading medical knowledge. Her efforts was not only appreciated by nurses but also the entire people of Great Britain. Nightingale's name was enlisted among the 100 Greatest Britons in 2002 in a broadcast by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). The program was based on a television poll conducted to determine whom the United  Kingdom public considered the greatest British people in history. Florence Nightingale's name was  chosen by the people of UK along other great scientists. She is a role-model for nurses around the world. Nightingale was the first person  to give nurses professional status and serious training. As a consequences of her various she played nurses changed from being servants to being skilled essential aids to physicians. 
International Nurses Day(IND) is held each year on the birthday. Our dear mother in profession,you shall continue to be remembered in good memory and  celebrated. I say a big congratulations to the entire sons and daughters (Nurses) of Nightingale on this great day. You are heroes. 
The various types of cares and procedures such as bedbathing, last offices, Wound dressing etc you rendered to patients shall not be in vain. You should discharge your duty and responsibility with passion and compassion. Render cares to all categories of patients without bias or sentiments. God shall reward you handsomely and prepare for you special packages hereafter. This is in addition to your monetary gains.
Happy International Nurses Day!
By Bilyaminu Bala Yahya, B.B.Y (BNSc in view)
Department of Nursing Sciences. 
A.B.U Zaria

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