National Nurses Week Is May 6-12

The work of America’s 2.6 million registered nurses to save lives and to maintain the health of millions of individuals is the focus of this year’s National Nurses Week, celebrated annually May 6-12 throughout the United States.

"Nurses Care for America" is the theme for 2002. National Nurses Week opened on May 6, the traditional National Nurses Day. This year the American Nurses Association (ANA), in conjunction with its 54 Constituent State Nurses Associations, will be recognizing nurses by drawing special attention to nurse staffing issues.

Annually, National Nurses Week begins on May 6, marked as RN Recognition Day, and ends on May 12, the birthday of Florence Nightingale, founder of nursing as a modern profession. During this week, registered nurses at Mercy Health Center of Manhattan will be honored with candy grams, pizza parties, ice cream sundaes, Nurse’s luncheon, Hand Blessing Ceremony and random gift drawings for nursing staff.

Traditionally, National Nurses Week is devoted to highlighting the diverse ways in which registered nurses, the largest health care profession, are working to improve health care. From bedside nursing in hospitals and long-term care facilities to the halls of research institutions, state legislatures, and Congress, the depth and breadth of the nursing profession is meeting the expanding health care needs of American society.