In May, Nursing Now’s successful three-year global campaign to raise the status and profile of nursing draws to a close. Working in collaboration with the World Health Organization and International Council of Nurses, Nursing Now grew to have a presence in 126 countries, with over 700 groups worldwide.
The campaign’s aim was simple: to improve health globally by raising the status and profile of nursing. It was inspired by a 2016 report by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Global Health (APPG) - ‘The Triple Impact of Nursing’ - which argued that increasing the number of nurses and developing nursing would help to improve health, promote gender equality and support economic growth.
Starting with just one group in Uganda, Nursing Now has grown into a formidable network of nurses who collaborate to share innovations, research, influence policy and advocate for more nurses in leadership positions.
The hard work of the nurses involved has more than paid off. Through engagement with governments and health leaders, 35 countries have invested more in nursing, and over 700 employers have set up development programmes for early-career nurses and midwives.
And, although the Nursing Now campaign formally ends this month, many of the groups it spawned will continue to operate and lobby for change and improvements in nursing.
Work to be done
With nurses the largest group of health professionals and identified as one of the most trusted sources of health information, we stand by Nursing Now’s mission to invest in their ongoing development.
The work of the campaign, coupled with the global pandemic, has reinforced the importance of nurses and the valuable skills they bring to our communities. Currently, the biggest challenge for employers is recruiting and retaining these skills, especially in light of a rise in nurse burnout and record numbers leaving the profession over the last 12 months.
It’s critical that the pandemic doesn’t undermine all of the hard work of Nursing Now. So, how do employers keep hold of their nurses and provide them with the benefits and opportunities for growth that they deserve? Several areas need to be addressed, including:
Culture. Creating a workplace environment that’s collaborative and supportive.
Growth. Providing career development opportunities and further education that extends beyond required CPD.
Flexibility. Implementing a flexible and accommodating working schedule (easier said than done, we know).
Recognition. Processes in place that ensure hard work is acknowledged and rewarded.
In our next blog, we will explore each of these areas in more detail and provide real examples from our clients which have proven effective in attracting and retaining nursing talent, even during these challenging times.