President IFPN News October 2018
I write to update you on the work of the IFPN Executive and Ambassadors since June this year. You will be aware from my previous communication and your own supporting vote, that we have 3 willing Ambassadors in place who have all agreed to serve IFPN until December 2019. I am most grateful to Kate Woodhead UK, Mary Jo Steiert USA, and Ruth Melville (Immediate Past President) Australia, for their shared interest and commitment to our Global Perioperative Nursing team and for their promotion and support of perioperative nurses within their affiliated geographical regions.
I invite each of you as leaders in your own National organisations to give some consideration to this role for the future. If you have questions, please do engage with the current Ambassadors or any member of the Executive board.
Team IFPN are endeavoring to engage with the powerful and influential organisations, such as the International Council of Nurses (ICN), World Health Organisation (WHO) and G4Alliance to progress our established mission and have a firm footing and a voice where it counts, on behalf of patients, nurses and allied health professionals across the planet.
I write directly to yourselves to plead your engagement with your local and national organisations in support of IFPN attempts to promoting the outstanding work, experience, value and contribution of the perioperative nurse within the many areas of healthcare where perioperative nursing is now undertaken. Across the world, professional organisations are the sum total of the people who populate them; nowhere more than within our own perioperative organisations, be they local, national or international.
Everything, in my view comes down to personal responsibility and you will, I am sure able to identify the most willing and engaged members of your own local groups. Perhaps this is even yourself! My personal mantra identifies that
‘it always begins with me’
With this personal commitment and responsibility established, we are collectively a formidable and powerful force of perioperative professionals to be reckoned with.
Nurses are the largest occupational group within the health sector and key in the provision of healthcare. Concerns have been raised internationally about the future of nursing in terms of meeting workforce demands, global nursing shortage, migration and the ethical nurse recruitment from resource poor countries.
IFPN-President Message-October 2018
Infectious disease continues to adversely affect populations in low- and middle-income countries. Investments in solutions often focus on technology which of course is very important, yet healthcare workers are in short supply. Nurses, the greatest global number of healthcare workers are largely responsible for patient care around the world and are involved from the cradle to the grave - so to speak, from birth to death!
Nurses and the organisations that they represent nationally and internationally are key to implementing and influencing the development of policy which is patient centred. The roles of nursing have been redefined many times within are different healthcare systems and have integrated and overlapped with many medical roles within our communities.
Our surgical colleagues and physicians are excellent at promoting their value and worth as can be clearly evidenced from the many blogs, tweets and other social media communications available. It is disappointing how little engagement we provide in this format, despite the power and speed with which we can deliver our message. Please add the Twitter handle hashtag @IFPNPresident and invite your members to join and keep in touch.
The responsibility to promote our profession and claim the voice of perioperative nursing that is so desperately needed across the globe is within our grasp and there has never been a better time to take action.
We need to understand the effects of globalisation on health worldwide so that as a profession, we are empowered to respond proactively to the changes that are constantly taking place.
The Nursing Now campaign was launched to empower and support nurses in meeting the 21st century health challenges. The campaign 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 campaign recognises that nurses are at the heart of countries that provide health for all. One of the most trusted professions, nurses provide effective and quality care for people of all ages and are central in addressing the increasing burden of noncommunicable diseases such as cancer and heart disease.
This 3-year global campaign was launched in February 2018 in London and Geneva in collaboration with ICN and WHO with plans to extend into South Africa, Uganda and USA.
Nurses are the linchpin of health teams, playing a crucial role in health promotion, disease prevention, treatment and care.
IFPN-President Message-October 2018
The international Council of nursing ICN given definition to the role of nursing:
‘nursing encompasses autonomous and collaborative care of individuals of all ages, families, groups and communities, sick or well and in all settings. Nursing includes the promotion of health, prevention of illness, and the care of a, disabled and dying people. Advocacy, promotion of a safe environment, research, participation in shaping healthcare policy and inpatient and health systems management, and education are also key nursing roles’ (https//www.icn.ch)
In my view, we, as nursing leaders, have a moral obligation to be involved in the health of our global neighbours.
The unique contribution of perioperative nurses - undertaking different roles in different circumstances, and utilising a combination of knowledge, practical skills and values make us particularly well-placed to meet the needs of the future as well as those of today.
While recognising that other professions share some of these features, the nursing contribution is unique because of its scale and the range of roles nurses play.
Nurses and the organisations that they represent nationally and internationally are key to implementing and influencing the development of policy which is patient centred. The roles of nursing have been redefined many times within different healthcare systems and have integrated and overlapped with many medical roles within our communities.
A nurse entrepreneur from the UK, Heather Henry-co chair of the New NHS Alliance says- ‘We need to market nursing as if it were a new drug or treatment’
Health decision making needs nurses to be more involved. Health leaders globally must develop new models of care maximise nursing contributions to achieving universal health coverage and other health goals. This is where we must be engaged.
Governments must invest in improving nurses working conditions, training and leadership skills to enhance health, empower women and strengthen local economies. These are crucial elements to the global change agenda.
This month ICN who represent more than 130 national nurses’ associations representing over 20 million nurses worldwide, called for increased nursing leadership to combat the effects of climate change on health. In their position statement -Nurses, climate change and health, they call for governments health system leaders, national nursing associations and nurse leaders to take immediate action to mitigate climate change and to support people and communities around the world to adapt to its impacts.
IFPN-President Message-October 2018
Climate change presents the single largest threat to global development with the potential to undermine the past 50 years of public health gains, and we are almost daily bombarded with evidence of major disasters affecting global communities -our neighbours-across the world.
The Global Alliance(G4) for surgical, obstetric, trauma and anaesthesia care is committed to advocating for the neglected surgical patient and is driven by a mission to provide a collective voice for increased access to safe, essential, timely surgical, obstetric, trauma and anaesthesia care as part of universal health coverage.
IFPN are now a member of this powerful organisation, the G4 Alliance representing over 80 organisations and working in more than 160 countries, to mobilise resources and help provide access to safer surgery and anaesthesia care for patients in need. Advocacy is at the heart of the work of the G4 alliance, who are engaged in activities to influence policymakers, funders and the general public.
In conclusion, I want to thank you all for your committed personal outstanding contribution to perioperative nursing; those who work daily at the ‘coal face’, and those who support from strategic space. We all have a voice, we all make a unique contribution, make no mistake about that! Do not undervalue that outstanding and unique contribution that is the essence of perioperative nursing.
With Kindest Regards,
Mona Guckian Fisher
1. International Council of Nurses: https://www.icn.ch
2. Nursing Now: https://www.nursingnow.org
3. Nurses, climate change and health. International Council of Nurses ICN: Position Statement: September 2018 https://www.icn.ch
4. International Federation of Perioperative Nurses (IFPN) www.ifpn.org.uk
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