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Chief nursing officer’s message to nurses for the New Year |04 January 2021

Chief nursing officer’s message to nurses for the New Year

Gylian Mein

‘Thank you for your dedication, courage, kindness and resilience’


My fellow nurses and midwives,

“2020 was designated the International Year of the Nurse and the Midwife by the World Health Assembly, to honour the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale's birth and advance nurses' vital role in transforming health care around the world.

“The Year of the Nurse and Midwife 2020 has truly been our year; it was our opportunity to celebrate and champion the cause of nurses and midwives, and to highlight the incredible, life-changing work we do for patients across our health system.

“This year was not the year we nurses expected – in fact, it was not the year anyone expected! It has been historic! A year during which the universal health system has faced unprecedented challenges.

“All over the world, and in our own country, nurses among other frontline workers have this year shown tremendous dedication and commitment to their vocation. You have cared for patients with Covid-19, worked in quarantine facilities and provided continued care and services for patients with other health needs. You have displayed resilience and kindness. You have been instrumental in listening to and supporting patients who were anxious and afraid of this new disease and those who were constrained to spend time isolated from family and loved ones.

“Many nurses have contracted the virus while caring for their patients and in some countries; some have lost their lives. To quote Dame Donna Kinnair, chief executive and general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing: ‘Nursing is a challenging profession – the work we do is vital but often unseen, and too often, undervalued, but the skills and expertise we bring to patient care is undeniable and that has never been demonstrated more keenly than in the past 12 months’.

While we have not been able to conduct the activities we planned to mark the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife, the courageous work of nurses in response to the Covid-19 pandemic honours our year.

“We are grateful to the World Health Organisation for extending the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife into 2021 when I am sure we will have a chance to acknowledge the work of nurses, celebrate the many successes you’ve achieved and advocate for more people to join the profession.

“As 2020 draws to a close, I would like to send my thoughts to all those affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. I extend special thoughts and my heartfelt gratitude to my fellow nurses and midwives who have laboured and cared for patients during this difficult year. Thank you for your dedication, courage, kindness, and resilience. We will welcome 2021 with renewed hope. Hope in science and medicine, and hope in you, the nurses and midwives who tirelessly strive to provide quality health care.

“I wish you and your family a Happy and Healthy New Year!”


Gylian Mein

Chief Nursing Officer

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