International Nurses Day 2024 theme unveiled

For this year’s International Nurses Day, the International Council of Nurses (ICN) is highlighting the economic power of care, with the goal of reshaping perceptions and demonstrating how strategic investment in nursing can bring considerable economic and societal benefits.

Celebrated on 12 May each year, the IND theme is chosen by ICN – a federation of more than 130 national nursing associations around the world, representing over 28 million nursing working globally.

ICN President, Dr Pamela Cipriano, said the 2024 IND theme: Our Nurses. Our Future. The economic power of care, was a call to action to invest more in the profession.

“Despite being the backbone of healthcare, nursing often faces financial constraints and societal undervaluation,” she said.

“We believe now is the time for a shift in perspective. We have seen time and again how financial crises often lead to budgetary restrictions in healthcare, typically at the expense of nursing services. This reductionist approach overlooks the substantial and often underemphasised economic value that nursing contributes to healthcare and society as a whole.”

A special IND report on the economic power of care will be released on International Nurses Day.

“Policymakers, healthcare administrators, and even the general public are often unaware or misinformed about the return on investment that adequate funding in nursing can provide, especially in financially turbulent times such as these,” Dr Cipriano said.

“Drawing from these lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic and recognising the increasing threat to the health of populations around the world due to conflicts, the climate crisis and financial instability, we believe the time is right to advocate for a shift in perspective and policy.’

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