The lady with the lamp as Florence Nightingale is fondly remembered as the daughter of healthy land owner, William Nightingale of Emily park of Hampshire.
Born in Florence, Italy on May 12, 1820 Nightingale was raised mostly in Derbyshire, England and received a thorough classical education from her father. In 1849 she went abroad to study the European Hospital System and in 1850 she began training in nursing at Institute of Saint Vincent De Paul in Alexandria Egypt. She subsequently studied at the Institute for Protestant Deaconesses at Kaiser- -worth, Germany. In 1853, she became superintendent of the Hospital for Invalid Gentlewomen in London. After the Crimean war broke out in 1854, Nightingale stirred by reports of the primitive sanitation methods and grossly inadequate nursing facilities at the Large British Barracks Hospital at Uskudar (Turkey) dispatched a letter to the British secretary of war, volunteering her services in Crimea. At the same time unaware of her action, the Minister of War proposed that she assume direction of all nursing operations at the war front. She set out Uskudar accompanied by 38 nurses. Under Nightingale’s supervision, efficient nursing department were established at Uskudar and later at Crimean through her tireless efforts the mortality rate among the sick and wounded was greatly reduced at the close of war in 1860, with a fund raised in tribute to her services Nightingale founded Nightingale School and Home for Nurses at St. Thomas Hospital in London. The opening of this school marked the beginning of professional education in Nursing. In recognition of her hardwork queen Victoria awarded Ms. Nightingale the Royal Red Cross in 1883. In her old age she received many honours including the Order of Merit (1907) becoming the first woman to receive it.
Ms. Florence nightingale breathed her last at the age of 90 on 13th August, 1910 and still continues to be an inspiration to the nursing profession.
The International Nurses Day is celebrated on 12th May every year to honour the memory of this great lady.