Nursing Now aims to improve health globally by raising the profile and status of nurses worldwide – influencing policymakers and supporting nurses themselves to lead, learn and build a global movement.
The changing needs of the 21st Century mean nurses have an even greater role to play in the future. New and innovative types of services are needed – more community and home-based, more holistic and people-centred, with increased focus on prevention and making better use of technology. These are all areas where nurses can play a leading role. However, maximising nurses’ contributions will require that they are properly deployed, valued and included in policy and decision-making.
Nursing Now will work with partners around the world to advocate for more nurses in leadership positions – to help nurses achieve the influence they deserve. It will also help nurses access better education and training, while supporting them to share research and evidence of effective practice
Nursing Now will encourage health leaders to invest in nursing and introduce new models of care that maximise nurses’ contributions to achieving Universal Health Coverage which would guarantee everyone the right to quality health care without financial hardship.
Why we need a new nursing campaign
Countries around the world face huge challenges providing health care to their people because of scarce resources, the rising burden of chronic diseases like diabetes, and the impact of emerging factors such as climate change and migration.
With ageing populations and the spread of western lifestyles, the rapid rise of diseases such as diabetes and heart disease are putting health systems under strain.
In poorer regions, this comes on top of the burden of infectious diseases like HIV/AIDS and malaria.
The global shortage of health workers means there simply aren’t enough to help tackle these threats and this includes nurses – 9 million more nurses and midwives are needed by 2030.
Right now, health services aren’t getting the most out of nurses who are often undervalued and unable to work to their full potential.
The potential of nurses to do more varied jobs and take on more responsibility is often overlooked because of strict hierarchies and engrained ideas about what they can and cannot do.
Nurses often have little influence over policy and decision-making despite the understanding and insight their unique position in the system gives them.
Investing to improve nurses’ working conditions, training and leadership skills can deliver the Triple Impact of improving health, empowering women (as most nurses are still female) and strengthening local economies.
Nurses will be a key part of the solution to today’s health challenges – if they are properly deployed, valued and included in health decision-making.
As the health professionals closest to communities, nurses are promoting good health and preventing disease, as well as providing care at the community level.
Nurses are at the heart of most health teams – they support and supervise community health workers and link to more specialised care when needed.
But they could be doing so much more – studies have shown that when nurses are trained and given greater scope to expand their roles, they deliver impressive results for patients.
Maximising this potential will be vital to achieving the goal of Universal Health Coverage, making sure everyone, everywhere has access to quality essential healthcare services, a fundamental human right.