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Nursing Perspectives and the “Nursing Now” Campaign

Nursing constitutes half of the health workforce, and nurses have been identified as the main responsible for coordinating health teams at different levels of Health Care.

The “Triple Impact of Nursing” report has pointed to the crucial role of Nursing in the global agenda in the face of demographic and epidemiological changes; the need for different forms of care, policies and services in the community and home, and the alignment of Nursing philosophy, practice and values to the changes that are occurring. The report recommended that governments and international agencies work to raise the profession's profile, make it central to health policies, and establish programs for the development of nursing leaders(11 All-Party Parliamentary Group on Global Health. Triple Impact: how developing nursing will improve health, promote gender equality and support economic growth. Geneve: All-Party Parliamentary Group on Global Health [Internet]. 2016 [cited 2018 Jul 07]. Available from:

The World Health Organization, for its part, calls on governments to invest in policies that value the role of Nursing given the shortage of nine million nurses, their low pay, gender inequality, and the lack of professionals in leadership positions.

Since 2013, the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) has been pointing out to the international community the need to broaden the role of nurses at the first level of care as practitioners of advanced practice. Such professionals with postgraduate training would be integrated to the interprofessional team of the Primary Health Care services, contributing to the management of the care of patients/users with mild acute diseases and chronic disorders diagnosed according to protocols or clinical guidelines(22 Pan American Health Organization. Expanding the role of nurses in Primary Health Care [Internet]. Washington, DC: PAHO. 2018 [cited 2018 Jul 07]. Available from:

However, factors such as ongoing training, adequate work opportunities, sufficient and well-distributed numbers of professionals, valorization, financial incentives, political will and leadership recognition remain the major challenges for advancement of the profession in all regions of the world and consequently, achievement of conditions and capabilities to expand access and universal health coverage.

The International Council of Nurses (ICN), the WHO and the UK All Party Parliamentary Group on Global Health in the UK, to address these difficulties, launched the “Nursing Now” campaign in February 2018, having as patroness the Duchess of Cambridge and with several leaders supporting the campaign.

The campaign, which will end in 2020, when the bicentenary of Florence Nightingale will be celebrated, counts today the accession of 30 countries. Brazil, Canada, the United States, Jamaica and Mexico are participating in the campaign. Other countries interested in joining the campaign should establish their objectives and plan of action, contact campaign coordination, sign commitment to disseminate it at the national level and support global actions.

The “Nursing Now” aims at increasing investment in improving education, professional development, regulation and working conditions for nurses; increasing their influence on national and international policies; increasing the number of nurses in leadership positions with more opportunities for development at all levels of leadership; increasing evidence to support policy; increasing work for nurses to act comprehensively; and increase and improve the dissemination of effective and innovative nursing practices(33 Crisp N, Iro E. Nursing now campaign: raising the status of nurses. Lancet [Internet]. 2018 [cited 2018 Jul 07]; 391(10124):920-1. Available from:

The Campaign promotes the profession at a global level, however, at the local level, it is necessary to work to strengthen the articulation between educational institutions and health services, invest in the workforce and enhance the professional, improve training and, especially, work together to advance the profession. It is the collective, participatory, motivating and well-publicized work of people within and between organizations that fight for the advancement of nursing, which will make NOW the right moment in any service and anywhere in the world.


Publication Dates

  • Publication in this collection
    Sep-Oct 2018
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