Diversity in Nursing celebrated on International Nurses Day

10 May 2019
Celebrating diversity in the nursing profession was the focus for Cambridge University Hospitals' first ever International Nurses Day conference.

Prof Mark Radford is pictured celebrating International Nurses Day with Yvonne Coghill (left) and Lorraine Szeremeta.More than 120 registered nurses attended the event on Thursday (9 May) which highlighted the huge variety of nursing roles at the NHS Trust, as well as the diversity of nurses who work there.

Lorraine Szeremeta, chief nurse for Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Trust, who organised the event, said: “I am passionate about keeping nurses in nursing and attracting more people into this wonderful profession.

“The diversity we have in our roles is astounding. At Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Trust we employ 3268 registered nurses, from 56 different nationalities aged from 18 to over 70. Together they perform countless different job roles, meaning there really is something for everyone and we need to be proud of this.

“Our conference was also about celebrating the fact the NHS belongs to the people. Whatever their profession, nationality, ability, race, age, gender or sexuality, it is vital that we, as nurses, take the time to listen and engage with them to help deliver the very best care.”

Speakers at the event included Yvonne Coghill CBE, a former deputy president of the Royal College of Nursing who has been voted by NHS colleagues to be in the top 50 most inspirational women and top 50 BME pioneers.

She spoke passionately about the importance of  kindness and thoughtfulness when working with patients and the need to ensure equity existed throughout the profession.

Other speakers included Prof Mark Radford, Deputy Chief Nursing Officer – Delivery and Innovation for NHS England and NHS Improvement, who emphasised the importance of nurses taking pride in their roles and the impact they have, and Paul Vaughan, Head of Nursing Now England, NHS England and NHS improvement, who talked about Nursing Now.

The day was facilitated by Jenni Middleton, former editor of the Nursing Times, who brought her parents along to speak personally about the care they had received while at Addenbrooke’s Hospital.

The conference was also an opportunity for CUH to launch its new Nursing Ambassadors’ Scheme which is designed to encourage nurses and midwives to act as role models to inspire and encourage people to think about a career and educational opportunities within nursing.