International Nurses Day 2020 - 12 May 2020

Today really provides a moment to stop and think about the challenges our nurses have faced this year more than any other year. It has been unprecedented, and they have led the way in keeping everyone across the world safe. The compassion and care to all patients is unquestionable and their selfless dedication commendable.

There are more than 20 million nurses across the world and each one of them has a story.

Nurses hear the first cries of newborn babies and witness the last breaths of the dying. They experience many precious and poignant moments as well as some of the most sad and tragic.

In 2020 as we celebrate the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingales birth, the work our nurses and healthcare workers have undertaken during this pandemic cannot be underestimated.

Florence Nightingale (1820-1910) was a bright woman from a privileged family.

She had a penchant for maths and data and was able to access data and works of reformers from a range of European sources.

Nightingale is credited with being the first healthcare professional to use data to show that infection control improves health outcomes.

Her pioneering work came to the fore during the Crimean War. She took a posting as ‘Superintendent of the Female Nursing Establishment of the English General Hospitals in Turkey’. And this is where she became known as the ‘Lady with the Lamp’, for walking around patients’ beds at night, holding a lamp.

Through her career she stressed a practice that is relevant as ever today — handwashing. 

The hygiene principles she practiced are at the heart of the coronavirus response and have been pivotal in the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic, a constant reminder of her work. 

The 2020 COVID-19 pandemic has put a focus on nurses more than ever. The impact nurses have made demonstrate to policy makers, health professionals and the public the enormous contribution of nurses to health and wellbeing and the roles and responsibilities of this vital profession.

There are more than 390,000 nurses registered in Australia serving humanity and their actions continually protect the health and wellbeing of individuals, communities and nations.

As we celebrate today, we think Florence Nightingale would have been extremely humbled and proud.

“As a nurse, you have the opportunity and privilege to have the most intimate interactions with your patients. In this COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 many nurses have had interactions way beyond anything they ever imagined.

Daily they have often been the last person to hold a patient’s hand, the one by their side as they took their final breath, the one to give comfort and care when everyone else was ‘locked’ out. This takes privilege and care to another level. They have carried so much burden and I commend each and every one of them”.

Nicole Steers – COO Jobs Australia

“In the Foreword of the book “What I wish I knew about nursing” by Allie and Marty Wilson, I wrote; “… the profession I was entering would shape the person I am today and that I would find levels of patience, humility and compassion …. that some 40 years later I would still be challenged, entranced, frustrated and absorbed by this profession …. “. I remain as energetic, enthusiastic and committed to nursing as the day I commenced my training. The privilege of becoming a midwife inspired my connection to people in a way that was unimaginable. Being a Nurse and Midwife is in my DNA. To be able to say that I am a Nurse and Midwife is an endorsement that I belong to the most respected of professions.

In this international year of the nurse and midwife, on this day International Nurses Day,  means that I reflect on a lifetime of privilege of connecting with people, in real life situations, being trusted by them and most of all,  they allow the privilege of me caring for them and offering a service to them that in some way helps, touches or supports them”.

Deb Cerasa – CEO Jobs Australia 

Both the Jobs Australia CEO, Deb Cerasa and COO Nicole Steers have both previously practiced nursing in Australia after a distinguished career in the profession moved to Executive roles.

Both Deb and Nicole are still registered nurses in Australia.


Emma Hall

Membership and Marketing Team Leader