MCON walkathon to celebrate Nightingale’s birth anniversary

Manipal College of Nursing Manipal, Manipal Academy of Higher Education inaugurated the international Year of Nurse and Midwife to commemorate 200th birth anniversary of Florence Nightingale with a “Walkathon” on January 24, 2020, along with Kasturba Hospital Manipal and all the Nursing education institutions of Udupi district

World Health Organization has marked 2020 as the international year of Nurse and Midwives as a recognition for the contributions made by nurses for contributing to the healthcare and for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.  

The nursing institutions which took part in the walkathon were; Manipal School of Nursing MAHE Manipal, Manipal College of Nursing MAHE Manipal, Lombard Memorial School of Nursing, Lombard Memorial College of Nursing, Mitra School of Nursing, Udupi College of Nursing, Udupi School of nursing, Vidya College of Nursing, Ashrith College of Nursing, Ashrith school of Nursing, Nightingale school of nursing, Canara College of Nursing, New City School of Nursing, New City College of Nursing, Udupi Dhanvantari School of Nursing, Dhanvantari College of Nursing, Vidyaratna School of Nursing and Vidyaratna College of Nursing. A large number of nurses from Kasturba hospital Manipal also participated in the walkathon.

All these schools and colleges of nursing in Udupi district together have graduated 9,637 nurses so far. MAHE, the pioneers in education, first started the BSc Nursing programme in 1990. Manipal College of Nursing now offers MSc, MPhil and PhD programmes also. Manipal College of Nursing Manipal has contributed to higher education in nursing in India through 39 PhD graduates who are working as leaders in education, administration, clinical service and research in India and overseas too.

The WHO has designated 2020 as the International Year of Nurse and Midwife. The WHO Director General, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghe breyesus in a message to the fraternity said, “Nurses and Midwives are the backbones of every health system. In 2020 we are calling on all countries to invest in nurses and midwives as part of their commitment to health for all.”

Ms Elizabeth Iro, WHO Chief Nursing Officer said, “I am thankful that Nurses and Midwives are helping make progress towards health for all throughout the world”. The world needs 18 million more health workers to achieve and sustain universal health coverage by 2030 and approximately half of that shortfall i.e.: 9 million are nurses and midwives. Globally 70% of the health and social workforce are women, and Nurses and Midwives represent a large portion of this. Today MCON has made an impact in the lives of many young minds to lay a foundation for sustainable development. This walkathon is yet another path to unite and stay connected to reach our goals.

The walkathon was flagged off from KMC Greens by Dr Poornima Baliga, former Pro Vice-Chancellor of MAHE and the current Dean of TATA Manipal Medical College, Jamshedpur She congratulated the organizes and nurses who turned up in a large number even on a sunny day. The walkathon took its magical view as it proceeded through the knowledge city, Manipal.  Around 2600 participants walked up to the DC Office and returned to the Lawn of MCON, where they lit candles and rededicated themselves by taking the nurses’ pledge. After the walkathon, a stage function to commemorate the beginning of 200th Birth anniversary of Florence Nightingale was organized at the college premises.

Dr Anice George, Dean Manipal College of Nursing welcomed the gathering highlighting the motivation the nurses had and the positive response towards the inauguration of the year of the nurse and midwife. Dr Kasturi R Adiga, a pioneer in nursing education in Udupi district lit the lamp as a sign of respect and honour towards the founder of modern nursing. Dr Judith A Noronha, Professor & Associate Dean, MCON Manipal administered the Nurses’ pledge.   Mr C. G. Muthana, COO of Kasturba Hospital Manipal felicitated the nursing fraternity for its power of service, dedication, competence and compassion the nurses hold on to at every health care setting. Dr Leena Sequira Principal School of Nursing Manipal pressed on the opportunities a nurse is bestowed with that is healing the mind, body, soul and heart of patients as well as their families and also for themselves.  Dr Suja Karkada, principal Lombard Memorial college of Nursing spoke on the scope of nurses and said that becoming a nurse is one of the most selfless act a person can undertake. Unlike many other professions, the scope of nursing is not limited to a few. Budding nurses need to fix the routes of knowledge, skills and attitude and take time to learn theory and practice the skills effectively before taking up various responsibilities in the society. Mr Vinish the organizing chairperson thanked the entire crowd for the endurance and support for a cause.