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A minute’s silence for nurses to mark pandemic anniversary

RCN’s 11 March event marks one year since WHO declared COVID-19 a pandemic
Picture shows an older couple wearing masks and looking solemn

RCNs 11 March event marks one year since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic

A minutes silence in honour of nursing staff who have died of COVID-19 will be held to mark one year since the start of the pandemic.

The RCNs COVID-19: A Time to Reflect online event will start at 10:15am today (11 March) and close with a minutes silence at 11am.

Critical to support nurses still dealing with the pandemic, RCN says

Speaking ahead of the event, RCN general secretary Dame Donna Kinnair said nurses work over the past year had changed the image of nurses. Old-fashioned stereotypes of nurses as

RCN’s 11 March event marks one year since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic

Picture shows an older couple wearing masks and looking solemn
Picture: iStock

A minute’s silence in honour of nursing staff who have died of COVID-19 will be held to mark one year since the start of the pandemic.

The RCN’s COVID-19: A Time to Reflect online event will start at 10:15am today (11 March) and close with a minute’s silence at 11am.

Critical to support nurses still dealing with the pandemic, RCN says

Speaking ahead of the event, RCN general secretary Dame Donna Kinnair said nurses’ work over the past year had changed the image of nurses. ‘Old-fashioned stereotypes of nurses as handmaidens of the ward have been rubbished,’ she said. ‘We are not angels or heroes – we are highly skilled and carrying out a safety critical job.’

The ceremony marks one year to the day since the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic on 11 March 2020.

The RCN believes at least 952 health and social care workers have died as a result of COVID-19 in the UK since the start of the pandemic. Globally, there are believed to have been at least 2,262 nursing deaths up to December 2020, according to the International Council of Nurses.

As well as remembering staff who have died, Professor Kinnair said it was critical to support nurses still dealing with the pandemic, something the event will also highlight.

‘Nursing staff have given their all to treat patients during the pandemic and some have paid the ultimate price,’ she said.

‘Others are facing burnout, and what they need now is the opportunity to rest and recover when we come out of the pandemic.’

Professor Kinnair will deliver a speech at the online event, alongside RCN president Dame Anne Marie Rafferty and chair of council Dave Dawes.

Book of Remembrance


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COVID-19: A Time to Reflect (RCN)


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