Talking about wonder nurses, you will probably love the story of Florence Nightingale. If you don’t know who she is, then you have come to the right place as we are going to list down fifteen heroic facts about her. Florence was born on none other than “Florence” in Italy on May 12, 1820. She left a revolutionary mark on healthcare, sanitation, and statistics. Below, we are going to explore more about her and how she became an icon in the field of nursing.
- Florence is Fluent in Many Languages
- Florence is fond of the Latin
and Greek language. Her father saw her potential, and through him, she learned
the basics of everything related to mathematics at a young age as well as
philosophy and literature.
- She Pursued Nursing at a Young Age
- Back then, nursing is a black
sheep of among all occupations around. It was heavily associated with low
social status as well as alcoholism. Women who pursued nursing have small wages
to the point that they have to enter prostitution to garner extra cash. But
that didn’t stop Florence to pursue her dream career. Even with her parent’s
objections, Florence pushed herself to study nursing because it’s what she
wants. In 1850, she started learning the craft and basics of nursing. And then three
years later, she became the superintendent of a hospital based in London.
- Marriage is a big “NO” for Her
- Florence is the kind of woman
that can stand on her own without the need of a man. She turned down myriads of
proposals including one from Henry Nicholson.
- Florence’ 38 Nurses
- During the war between France
and Britain with Russia, this is where Florence turned into a Victorian
celebrity. She had a good connection with UK’s war secretary Sidney Herbert.
Herbert gave her permission to allow 38 volunteers to treat the wounded in the
war. Back then, cleanliness is nowhere to be found. With floors littered with
feces, rats and vermin are running around the hallways, and linens are looking
like they came straight from a horror movie. Because of this, about 42.7% of
patients died, and this is where Florence implemented strict hygiene rules for
the hospital. As a result, the number has gone down to 2% by June 1855.
- The Lady with the Lamp
- Florence Nightingale became a
huge name in the nursing field. The good news then spread to the entire London where
she was renowned as a “ministering angel” in a London Times article back then.
They also added that she heals the wounded with a little lamp in her hand. And
this is where she was known as the “Lady with the Lamp.”
- She Became a Messenger
- Florence became the messenger of the war on behalf of dead soldiers back in 1856.
- She Helped Popularized the Pie Chart
- The first pie chart was
unveiled in 1801, but haven’t gained popularity since its release. However,
historians have recognized nurses to be the early adopter and promoter of the
pie chart. Florence is among one of them to utilize this statistical tool.
- Queen Victoria Was Her Fan
- The Queen is one of
Nightingale’s biggest fan and she even sent a special brooch for her as a way
of saying thank you. Florence and Queen Victoria first met at 1856 and
continued to remain contact with each other for decades.
- She Worked with the British Government to Enact Sanitation Laws
- Florence used her influence to
enforce sanitation laws in different parts of the UK. Between 1871 and 1875,
she pushed a special legislation that would force extant buildings into
connecting with main drainage. By the year 1935, the result was a 20-year
increase in the life expectancy in the country.
- Her Book Became an Inspiration Until Today
- Florence wrote a book which
became a hit in the field of nursing back then. Until today, some pointers in
the book are still being practiced in hospitals.
- The American Civil War Followed Her Advice
- The Union and the Confederacy followed
Florence’ advice about proper hygiene to the point they built hospitals under
- She Became a Teacher
- Florence became a teacher to Linda
Richards, America’s first trained nurse. Later on, her focus shifted towards
the field of psychiatry to work with mental health professionals.
- She is the First Woman to be Inducted into the Order of Merit
- King Edward VII awarded
Florence because of her various meritorious services, especially in the field
of arts, literature, science, and most especially nursing. Florence got the
award in 1907 where no other woman got the honor. However, the award was passed
on to Dorothy Hodgkin in 1965.
- International Nurses Day
- Florence’ birthday became an
international nurses’ day, which has been going strong since 1974.
- Her Voice is On the Internet
- Florence met with Thomas Edison’s representatives back on July 30, 1980, where they created a brief recording of her speech. And surprisingly, the recording was passed on from generations to generations and can be found on YouTube today.