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Letter: Our nurses, our future

Our nurses, our future

Our nurses, our future

I am one of the Yukon’s ‘old’ nurses. I have been around long enough to remember transfer of health services to YG and the building of our existing hospital.

It is safe to say that I have seen a lot of change throughout the years – in how our health care is delivered, in what our health care priorities are and in who makes up our health care teams. I’ve learned that change is inevitable and, like our current reality of long wait times, orphaned patients, and staffing shortages, it can be very challenging. But I also know that our foundation in the Yukon (though it shakes from time to time) is firm. And that’s because of the people who go to work every day with the goal of providing the best health care they can.

May 8 to 14 is International Nursing Week with May 12 designated as International Nursing Day. This is a perfect opportunity for me to thank my many nurse colleagues – for their commitment and passion for the work they do, for their advocacy on behalf of patients, families, and communities and for their professionalism and caring when I’ve been their patient.

The theme for International Nursing Week this year is ‘Our Nurses. Our Future’. As I near the end of a career that I have loved from Day 1, I reflect on the future of nursing in our territory, our country and abroad. I passionately believe that nurses have an important role to play in shaping ‘our future’ in health care. But what about ‘our nurses’? I often see nurses who are tired and overwhelmed. But I see these same nurses look up and smile at the person who has come through the door and ask how they can help.

In order to help our nurses care for each of us, we need to care for our nurses. So, I urge every Yukoner to take the time this week and every week to thank their nurses for the work they do.

Happy Nursing Week to all my nurse colleagues. Heartfelt thanks to every one of you.

Lee Holliday, RN, NP