Editorial: Remarkable character of nurses

May. 07, 2014 @ 11:03 PM

Whether you see them at Maria Parham Medical Center, some other local medical office or even on their way as a student at Vance-Granville Community College, we hope you’ll stop this week and thank nurses.

This is their week, National Nurses Week, and we are so thankful for all they do — especially when the doctor seems to be pulled in another direction, and we’re wondering what will happen next.

In the earliest records, nursing was nowhere near what it is today and not just because of the advances in technology and science. Essentially, care was in the form of hygiene and comfort and came mostly from those with religious organizations.

Hundreds of years later, we’ve had incredible strides, and the primary advances of modern nursing are credited to the work of Florence Nightingale, whose birthday (May 12, 1820) helps shape when we celebrate Nurses Week. Monday will be the close of the recognition week this year.

According to the American Nurses Association, “Nursing is the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, alleviation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response, and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, communities and populations.” To do it all, nurses are well-rounded and have a relationship — ever how brief or long it may be — with those under their care. They take information, process it and make decisions for our best interests. They improve their education, and we benefit. And they understand social and public policy.

Nurses help saves lives by advocating, leading and caring.

We’ve benefited greatly through the years from nurses and what they do for us. Some have even gone on to serve in other notable capacities. Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson was the first elected to the U.S. Congress, and Elnora D. Daniel was the first black nurse elected president of a major university (Chicago State).

Whether it is a trailblazer or another from the three decades of VGCC’S program, we’re appreciative of all nurses and the care they provide. We are happy we don’t have to think what the world would be like without them.