JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The annual observance of will take place from July 18 to 23 under the theme, 'Nurses Working with the Poor Against Poverty'.
  • This focus originated with the International Council of Nurses, of which, the Nurses Association of Jamaica (NAJ) has been a member since 1953.
  • This international body puts the spotlight on different issues annually during the special week.

The annual observance of will take place from July 18 to 23 under the theme, ‘Nurses Working with the Poor Against Poverty’.

This focus originated with the International Council of Nurses, of which, the Nurses Association of Jamaica (NAJ) has been a member since 1953. This international body puts the spotlight on different issues annually during the special week.

Valda Lawerence-Campbell, President of the NAJ, told JIS News that the theme was very appropriate because nurses not only worked with the poor on a regular basis, but also had a role to play in assisting, educating and caring for underprivileged persons.”There are no better persons to work with the poor than our nurses,” she said.

To commence the observance of the week, a church service was held on Sunday, July 18, at the Portmore Assemblies of God, at 66 Portmore Drive.

Throughout the week, a tour party including the reigning ‘Nurse of the Year’, the three nominees for ‘Nurse of the Year 2004’, along with the ‘Nursing Student of the Year’ for 2004 will make courtesy calls on Jamaican officials including Minister of Health, John Junor on July 21 at 10:00 a.m.

The Founders Day Ceremony that recognizes persons, who have contributed steadfastly to the NAJ, will take place on July 19 at the Julie Symes Auditorium on 72 Arnold Road, the former home of the Nursing Council of Jamaica. This year, the NAJ will showcase enrolled assistant nurses as well as hand out awards to outstanding registered nurses, who are all members of the organization.

On July 20 and 21, summer classes will be held for nurses at the Jamaica Conference Centre on Duke Street in Kingston. This is in keeping with the aim of continuing education for all nurses as required for the Biennial Renewal of Licences. Nurses will be able to use summer school as a means of earning additional hours toward the renewal of licences.

The major highlight of the week is the Awards Ceremony at the Hilton Kingston Hotel on July 22, commencing at 6:00 p.m. The guest speaker will be Marcia Forbes, a nurse entrepreneur. At the function, the ‘Nurse of the Year’ and the ‘Nursing Student of the Year’ and their runners-up, will be duly recognized and awarded.

Nurses Week in Jamaica started in 1975, when the first, ‘Nurse of the Year’ Sarah Hamilton was selected. The celebrations were low keyed until 1999, when the LASCO Group of Companies stepped in as the main sponsor of the week. The presence of LASCO boosted the observance with a main prize of $100,000 to the ‘Nurse of the Year’.