The care and work done at a hospital is provided by a team of individuals, all of whom have an important, be it critical, role in our resultant services and outcomes.
But at the crossroads of all that is done in the hospital is a nurse. Usually at the bedside, OR table, gurney, or examination table; the nurse is the linchpin of all that we do.
All of the great work that I provided clinically and administratively could not have been done without the teamwork and collaboration of nursing.
They’re a critical part of our health care team at Henry Ford, working long hours and providing expert care to our patients.
My partner in running this hospital, Ronnie Hall, is the same partner that I worked with to create one of the great intensive care units in our region; the Henry Ford Hospital Medical Intensive Care Unit. Ronnie’s clinical instincts and organization skills that she honed at the bedside are the same talents that have made her a great hospital operational leader.
“Thank you” never seems enough when it comes to showing our appreciation for our nurses.
And next week, our celebration at Henry Ford Hospital will continue with several fun activities for our nurses – free massages and some friendly competitions, including unit decorating and a quiz bowl.
The week will conclude with a special ceremony that will award the Henry Nursing Awards, which honor a select few nurses who were nominated by colleagues because they embody our vision and are committed to the advancement of the nursing profession.
Nurses Week has a long and proud tradition in our country, thanks to those who fought tirelessly to set it as a national day, and then week, of recognition.
The idea for a day of recognition was initiated by Dorothy Sutherland of the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare. She believed nurses in the U.S. should have their own national day of recognition.
Sutherland sent a proposal in 1953 to President Dwight D. Eisenhower to proclaim a “Nurse Day” in October of the following year. But the proclamation was never made.
It wasn’t until 1974, when President Richard Nixon issued a proclamation, that a week was finally designated by the White House as National Nurse Week.
This, of course, came a month after the International Council of Nurses proclaimed that May 12 would be “International Nurse Day” to honor the birthday of Florence Nightingale, who in 1860 laid the foundation of professional nursing with the establishment of a nursing school at St Thomas’ Hospital in London.
By February 1982, May 6 was formally acknowledged as “National Nurses Day” by the American Nurses Association’s Board of Directors, followed by President Ronald Reagan signing a proclamation formally designating the date as the “National Recognition Day for Nurses.”
In 1990, the recognition was expanded to a week-long celebration (May 6-12) by the ANA Board of Directors. With its rich history, National Nurses Week has truly emerged a celebration and recognition for the work our nurses do each day to provide the best care possible to patients.
I would like extend my thanks to each and every one of our nurses who works tirelessly day in and day out.
We could not do it without you; you are the heart and soul of Henry Ford Hospital.
If you would like to send your “thanks” or if you have a special message for our nurses, please share it in the comments section below.