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International Nurses and Midwives Day 2021

District celebrates special day for nurses and midwives.

Two people wearing face masks holding up posters
SydneyConnect Image: Celebrating at the NSW Health Vaccination Centre

Sydney Local Health District today wants to acknowledge and reflect on the crucial role nurses and midwives play in delivering health care which, this year, is underscored by the ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Today is International Nurses Day. Each year, it's held on the birthday of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing. The theme is Nurses: A Voice to Lead – A vision for future health care.

"This year nurses and midwives have responded to the challenges of COVID-19 and, at the same time, continued to care for and support our patients, their families and the community," Ivanka Komusanac, the District's Director of Nursing and Midwifery Services, said.

The opening of the NSW Health Vaccination Centre at Sydney Olympic Park this week is another significant milestone in the District's continued effort to protect the community from COVID-19.

"I want to thank our nurses and midwives for helping to vaccinate as many people in our community as possible, to protect them and their loved ones from COVID-19," Ms Komusanac said.

Since the pandemic began, nurses and midwives have taken on new roles, extra responsibility or been deployed to assist in the District's response and have adapted to new ways of delivering patient care.

They have staffed new Intensive Care Units and COVID-19 wards, been deployed to COVID-19 clinics at hospitals, in the community and at Sydney Airport and been seconded to Special Health Accommodation to provide care for people completing quarantine.

They have supported vulnerable residents in aged care facilities and disability group homes, embraced the rapid expansion of Australia's first virtual hospital, rpavirtual, and aided the delivery of COVID-19 vaccinations at RPA, the airport and now at Sydney Olympic Park.

"At the same time, they have continued to ensure patients in our hospitals, and in the community, receive high-quality clinical care," Ms Komusanac said.

Activities to mark the special day were held at facilities across the District.

At Balmain, a display paid tribute to nurses and midwives as the "healing hearts" of health care. At Canterbury, the foyer was decorated with paper hands which show the number of years nurses at the hospital have cared for others.

At Concord, a special breakfast was provided for nurses on night duty, a virtual trivia competition was held at RPA and a nursing-themed bake-off was run at rpavirtual and hampers were delivered to mental health care nurses.

A select number of nurses and midwives were presented with awards in recognition of their passion, dedication and the contribution they make to the health outcomes for patients, their families and the community.

To view more images of the celebrations, please click here.