ICN Congress – Nurses at the forefront transforming care

ICN Congress – Nurses at the forefront transforming care

Posted on May 26, 2017

Meeting in Barcelona, for the ICN bi-annual congress running until 1st June, the representatives from 131 national nurses’ associations currently at the ICN’s governing body meeting – the Council of National Nursing Association Representatives (CNR) – elected the ICN new President, Ms. Annette Kennedy (2017-2021). The EFN would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate Ms. Kennedy, who have also been EFN President from 2005 to 2007, for her new challenge.

The CNR started its debates with one of the most pressing humanitarian issues of the moment – the topic of migrants, refugees, and displaced persons (MRDPs). Today thousands of people in the world are forced to flee their homes to escape violence and seek refuge in their own countries or abroad. The scale of displacement is immense and the numbers are growing. As Ambassador Swing said, “It is important to not understate the importance of nurses to the migration cycle, both as migrants themselves, and as first line health workforce responders to health needs of communities”. The EFN believes that it is crucial to protect and support those nurses who are working with and have been active in the care of migrants, especially with the most vulnerable groups such as women, children, disabled, and elderly.

Furthermore, all the representatives present advocate for the role of nurses in making real and positive change to people’s lives. The EU is facing many challenges and nurses and nursing are part of the solution. But only with an appropriate education, in compliance with the Directive 2013/55/EU, a sufficient amount of motivated nurses, next to valuing the work of 3 million nurses in the EU, with proper investments and efforts, nurses will be able to contribute to a sustainable health system reform and make a real change to people’s lives. Nurses have a clear view on how the health and social sector should reform, lead reform, not in a disruptive way! It is, therefore, time to act and take real actions to make the difference!

Bringing together more than 8.000 nurses worldwide, the ICN Congress will, over the next few days, explore nurses’ leading role in the transformation of care, with a particular focus on universal health coverage, the Sustainable Development Goals and human resources for health.