During the year 2018, the International Council of Nurses and the World Health Organization launched a three-year global campaign (2018-2020), Nursing Now, with the aim of improving health by raising the profile and status of nursing worldwide. The campaign was based on the Triple Impact Report, which showed that empowering nurses would contribute to improving health globally, as well as to gender equality and building of stronger economies (All Party Parliamentary Group on Global Health: the Triple Impact of Nursing, 2016).
The year 2020 was designated by the World Health Organization as the Year of the Nurse and Midwife. Who might have thought that, in the same year, the world would be suffering the worst global pandemic of the past 100 years? This coincidence has not gone unnoticed. The COVID-19 pandemic has placed the nursing profession in the spotlight of the media and of society, and has emphasized the immense responsibility and commitment of nurses for patients and families. Conversely, too many important decisions for the general population have not relied on the knowledge of nurses. There is no question about the great contribution that nurses have made during the pandemic to face and manage such a threat. Nurses are as important at the bedside as on positions responsible for public health and political decisions. Maybe we should ask ourselves why this is happening. Once the pandemic is over, what will our contribution as nurses have been? We need to acknowledge the great impact that our leadership may have on society and our own discipline, and work together to make it happen. The year 2021 marks a new beginning for the Nightingale Challenge, as it becomes the “Nursing Now Challenge”, which will work with health employers globally to create leadership development opportunities for 100,000 nurses and midwives in more than 150 countries, by the end of 2022.
The creation of forums of debate and discussion for nurses is crucial to share and expand nursing knowledge and nursing networks. The upcoming NANDA-I Conference, themed “More Than a Language: Nursing Diagnosis Communicating Health and the Human Experience”, seeks to create a virtual space where nurses across the world can discuss and share their visions as the first step in starting to working together. Updated information will be available at www. nanda.org and www.bc.edu.
We are looking forward to meeting, discussing, and working with you all during the following week, and beyond!
Miriam Rodriguez-Monforte, PhD, RN