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Platinum Jubilee: nurses reflect on Queen’s unwavering support

Nursing leaders say the Queen ‘has been with us every step of the way’ and has ‘shone a light on the importance of nursing’ throughout her 70-year reign

Nursing leaders say the Queen ‘has been with us every step of the way’ and has ‘shone a light on the importance of nursing’ throughout her 70-year reign

Nursing leaders have thanked the Queen for her unwavering support for the profession as she celebrates her Platinum Jubilee.

Queen Elizabeth II has championed nursing throughout her 70-year reign, serving as royal patron of bodies including the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) and the Queen’s Nursing Institute (QNI).

During the pandemic she continued to highlight the efforts of nurses, which included initiating a special COVID-19 award as part of her Birthday Honours list.

Nursing leaders say the Queen ‘has been with us every step of the way’ and has ‘shone a light on the importance of nursing’ throughout her 70-year reign

The Queen meeting nurses in south London in the 1980s

Nursing leaders have thanked the Queen for her unwavering support for the profession as she celebrates her Platinum Jubilee.

Queen Elizabeth II has championed nursing throughout her 70-year reign, serving as royal patron of bodies including the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) and the Queen’s Nursing Institute (QNI).

During the pandemic she continued to highlight the efforts of nurses, which included initiating a special COVID-19 award as part of her Birthday Honours list.

RCN salutes Queen’s ‘70 years of incredible service’

The Queen became involved with the work of the RCN in 1944 as president of the Student Nurses’ Association and became the college’s patron after her coronation in 1953.

RCN president Denise Chaffer said: ‘The college would like to congratulate Her Majesty on her Platinum Jubilee and 70 years of incredible service.

‘In that time nursing has been through massive change and, more recently, incredible challenges. The Queen has been with us every step of the way and we are incredibly proud to continue to have her as our patron.’

Praise for Queen’s support of community nurses

The Queen has been patron of the QNI and QNI Scotland since 2002, and in 2007 approved the re-instatement of the title of Queen’s Nurse – after an absence of 40 years – for community nurses in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The title was reintroduced in Scotland in 2017.

The Queen meets nurses at St George’s Hospital in Tooting, London in November 1980

QNI chief executive Crystal Oldman said Her Majesty had helped to raise the profile and prestige of community nursing.

‘The Queen has been a great supporter of nursing as a profession throughout her career, including during the challenges of the past few years,’ said Dr Oldman, one of the many nurses to feature in the Queen’s Birthday Honours over the years.

‘Her status as a role model is perhaps reflected individually and collectively by the many thousands of Queen’s Nurses who have nursed in her name.’

Her Majesty signs every Queen’s Nurse certificate

Clare Cable

QNI Scotland chief executive and nurse director Clare Cable said: ‘Her Majesty welcomed the reintroduction of the Queen’s Nurse title to Scotland and has graciously signed every certificate for the last five years – all 130 of them. We are truly honoured that she has taken the time and trouble to do so.

‘Having Her Majesty The Queen’s signature is a mark of the value she places on nursing and is deeply appreciated by every recipient.’

Queen has ‘shone a light’ on nurses’ vital work

Florence Nightingale Foundation chief executive Greta Westwood thanked the Queen for her ‘outstanding contribution’.

‘Throughout her exceptional reign, Her Majesty has shone a light on the importance of nursing and midwifery,’ said Professor Westwood.

The Queen is also patron of the Canadian Nurses Association and colonel-in-chief of the Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps.


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