Nursing Leaders call on Director General of WHO to change policy about nursing leadership

By Sheila Davis Moderator Emeritus | 15 May, 2011

Nursing Leaders at the ICN conference sent a letter to the Director General of WHO expressing conern over lack of nursing voice at WHO on policy issues.

Geneva, Switzerland; Valletta Malta, 7 May 2011 - Expressing extreme
concern at the lack of nursing policy presence within the World Health
Organization (WHO) structures, an emergency resolution* was passed by the
governing body of the International Council of Nurses (ICN) at its biennial
meeting held in Valetta, Malta. The official representatives of ICN’s member
national nurses associations voted unanimously to demand that the WHO
Director General empower and finance nursing leadership positions throughout
the organization.
“At this time of health system redesign aiming to enable access and costefficiency,
it doesn’t make sense for WHO to advocate for nurses to fully
participate in the health care team at the clinical level, yet exclude them from
playing their full role at the policy table,” declared ICN President Rosemary
“As we move to discussion of the Resolution on Nursing and Midwifery at the
upcoming World Health Assembly, we urge member states to add their weight to
the call on Dr Chan to remedy the appalling lack of nursing leadership positions
throughout WHO structures, including at headquarters and in the regional
offices, beginning with reestablishment of the post of WHO Chief Nurse



Alice Grainger Gasser Replied at 3:06 AM, 16 May 2011

Right on!

Alice Grainger Gasser | Project Manager | World Heart Federation | 7, rue des Battoirs | P. O. Box 155 | 1211 Geneva 4 | Switzerland | Phone +41 22 807 03 33 | Fax +41 22 807 03 39 | E-mail | Web 
The World Heart Federation is committed to helping people achieve a longer and better life through prevention and control of heart disease and stroke, with a focus on low- and middle-income countries.

Janet A DEWAN PhD CRNA Replied at 7:02 AM, 17 May 2011

Nursing , and really clinician, voices have not been heard sufficiently in the policy arena . Formal inclusion in a leadership position is overdue for nursing. Nurses hold health systems together globally. Policy makers and Nurses need to recognize their essential role at the global policy table and embrace it. Thanks ICN for delivering the message.

Gerald Bryant Replied at 2:09 PM, 23 May 2011

Nursing is in a position to not only institute health policy but also to develop and influence policy. As the largest section of healthcare providers world wide, nurses should be at the table locally, regionally, nationally and internationally. We are rapidly becoming a "one nation" world with technology. Thank you ICN for making a difference for our pateints world wide!

Laxmi Tamang Replied at 4:09 PM, 3 Jun 2011

I completely agree with Gerlad. Besides, each and every country nursing associations must be strengthened to move towards this direction and ICN can play a major role on this.

Elhassan Elhassan Replied at 9:19 AM, 9 Jun 2011

In my country the situation may be different, the midwives are having a very rich role to play, the fact that as midwife the grandmother had made the history. For years and years the grandmother was the a leader woman in the society, plays the real soul of Leadership and considered as a reference concerning granddaughters bringing up, marriage, care during pregnancy and delivery. The community used to respect her very much. Added to that the formal training of midwives has started very early in comparison to neighboring countries and since the time of Early nineteenths the education of nurses and midwives was continuously expanding and progressing. Now we can graduate midwives and nurses with Diploma, Bachelor aiming at having them holding the PhD degree. They now share us in teaching at universities as staff members and sharing the university and faculties in making decisions. We have two channels of training midwives and nurses. one is at academic institutes, like universities and the other is at the federal ministry of health. Within the coming few days we will meet together so as to incorporate the high education of midwives and nurses in side the universities, at the governmental level.They will come to obtain university degrees and climb up the academic career as potential scientific human resources, continue their community valued input make their voices heard and enjoy the Leadership.

Ann Deschamps Replied at 6:22 AM, 10 Jun 2011

Hi Elhassan,

nice to hear that nursing and midwives are having a good position in your society.
Which is your country?

Ann Deschamps, MSN
Lector in Nursing
Coordinator Internationalisation
Nursing Researcher

Leuven, University College
Department of Health Care & Technology
Herestraat 49
3000 Leuven

Elhassan Elhassan Replied at 4:02 AM, 11 Jun 2011

Dear Ann Deschamps,
Best Regards.
MY Country is Sudan. I can feed you back more about this issue. kindly have a look at my profile please.