Ottumwa Regional Health Center (ORHC) is proud to join the American Nurses Association (ANA) in celebrating National Nurses Month this May, in an expanded recognition of the positive impact our nurses have on the health and well-being of our community. National Nurses Week – observed annually May 6-12 – honors the men and women around the country who have dedicated their lives to caring for those who are at their most vulnerable and in need. This year, as the invaluable contributions of nurses have gained increased awareness amid the fight against COVID-19, that celebration is being extended into a National Nurses Month.
“Our heroic nurses are always on the front lines of caring for the sick and injured,” said Lori Bailey, chief nursing officer of ORHC. “Their compassion, clinical expertise and servant leadership are fundamental to our ability to provide the high-quality care our patients have come to rely on. I am so proud to celebrate and honor their hard work – and not just during Nurses Month, but year-round. Their impact is an essential part of our mission of Making Communities Healthier.”
The roots of National Nurses Week can be traced back to 1953, when U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare employee Dorothy Sutherland suggested a national day of recognition for nurses. After a series of proclamations and resolutions through the decades, the American Nurses Association affirmed a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress by establishing May 6 as National Nurses Day in 1982. The ANA expanded the celebration to a week in 1991 and, in 1993, designated May 6-12 as the permanent annual dates to mark National Nurses Week.
In addition to this year’s expanded, month-long observance, the World Health Organization (WHO) has also declared 2020 as the Year of the Nurse. It is another well-deserved recognition for a group of professionals that could not have come at a more appropriate time.
“By their very nature, nurses are special people who are committed to selflessly serving and caring for others no matter the circumstance,” Bailey says. “During our fight against COVID-19, our nurses have truly stepped up and are making countless sacrifices daily to ensure the safety of patients and each other, and to help protect our community. They are heroes in every sense of the word.”
Community members are encouraged to leave their own special note of thanks at www.thankahealthcarehero.com.