International Nurses Day celebrated by Shifa International Hospital

Nurses have urged upon the government to include nurses in policy and decision making process as nurses are on the forefront of all the efforts that are being made to achieve the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, which are eight goals that all 191 UN member States have agreed to try to achieve by the year 2015.

shifaThey were addressing a ceremony arranged by Shifa International Hospital (SIH) to celebrate International Nurses Day (IND) on Wednesday. Former Director General Nursing Punjab Ms. Nisab Akhtar was the chief guest of the ceremony that was attended by a large number of nurses from various hospitals of the twin cities. Acting Head Nursing SIH Ms. Raeesa Kausar gave the vote of thanks.

International Nurses Day is celebrated around the world to mark the birth anniversary of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing. The International Council of Nurses commemorates this important day each year with the production and distribution of the International Nurses’ Day (IND) Kit. The IND Kit 2013 contains educational and public information materials, for use by nurses everywhere.

Ms. Nisab Akhtar emphasized that nurses must be engaged in advocacy and lobbying. “We must be involved in the development of any program introduced to improve health services as it is nurses who have the practical knowledge of how health service delivery can be designed, coordinated and effectively implemented.”

The IND theme for 2013 is “Closing The Gap: Millennium Development Goals 8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1”. Ms. Akhtar said that as the largest health care profession in the world, nurses’ role is very crucial to achievement the Millennium Development Goals (MDG). Nurses are often the only health professionals accessible to many people in their lifetime. So nurses are particularly well placed and often the most innovative in reaching disadvantaged populations. Nurses are educated to understand the complex nature of maintaining health and wellness.

Mentioning the data of International Council of Nurses, Ms. Akhtar said, ‘MDG 4 – Reduce child mortality’ has shown some significant success in the reduction of global deaths among children under the age of five. However, the majority of the 7.6 million child deaths that occur every year could be prevented using effective, affordable interventions. Neonatal mortality continues to be a major concern, as do infectious diseases and under-nutrition. She said ‘MDG 5 – Improve maternal health’ has resulted in an almost 50 percent decrease in the number of women who die during pregnancy or childbirth. On ‘MDG 6 – Combat HIV/AIDs’, malaria and other diseases, she said it shows significant regional variation and also some successes with fewer people becoming infected with HIV in most regions and significant expansion of access to life-saving anti-retroviral therapy. While the numbers of reported cases of malaria and tuberculosis are falling, there is no room for complacency as there are increasing reports of resistance to artemisinins and insecticides for treating malaria and increasing reports of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis.

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