Florence Nightingale: health’s great reformer remembered

As we celebrate the year of the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife, Susan Kent explores Florence Nightingale’s impact on healthcare – and the lessons modern Irish health policy could take from her approach

26th January, 2020
Florence Nightingale: health’s great reformer remembered
Florence Nightingale: her greatest achievement was reform of nursing

Many believe the three people who alleviated the most suffering in the 19th century were James Young Simpson, who invented chloroform; Joseph Lister, who invented antisepsis; and Florence Nightingale, who founded the modern nursing profession. To honour Nightingale’s 200th birth anniversary, the World Health Organisation has dedicated 2020 as the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife.

Like 21st-century celebrities, Nightingale was named after the city of her birth. Although confined to bed from...

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