International Nurses Day

International Nurses Day

WHAT:  The need to invest in Nursing: Lessons learned from the pandemic

WHEN: 11 May 2021 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 a.m. (EDT)

Videos recording available at YouTube in SpanishPortuguese and English.

Human resources in health have gained visibility and prominence due to their importance and contributions to maintaining the health of the population, ensuring that countries achieve access to health and universal health coverage, the Sustainable Development Goals and more recently in 2020, to cope with the pandemic.

For this reason, to value the essential role that health workers have played in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Health Organization has designated 2021 as the International Year of Health and Care Workers.

In the Region of the Americas, there are approximately 9 million nursing professionals, who represent more than 56% of the health workforce.

Around the world, the International Nurses Day is celebrated on May 12, the anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale. The Pan American Health Organization celebrates this day in recognition of these professionals, who are fundamental in health systems and in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.


The objective of this webinar is to celebrate the International Nurses Day and discuss the need to protect and invest together in nursing professionals. Participants Representatives of the ministries of health and education, universities, PAHO/WHO Collaborating Centers, national nursing associations, government nurses and health professionals, and students.


Opening session 

  • James Fitzgerald, Director, Health Systems and Services Department, PAHO/WHO 

Mobility of Health Professionals during the Pandemic 

  • Oscar Ocho, Director/Senior Lecturer of University of the West Indies School of Nursing, PAHO Collaborating Center for Nursing, Trinidad and Tobago 

The Role of Health Professionals in COVID-19 Vaccinations 

  • Ethel Maciel, Associate Professor, School of Nursing, Federal University of Espirito Santo, Brazil 
  • Ana María San Martin Venegas, Director of Nursing, Ministry of Health, Chile 
  • Gloria Lucia Arango Bayer, Associate Professor, Faculty of Nursing, National University of Colombia 


Publication: Contributions of nursing and midwifery professionals to women's health - Reports from the Region of the Americas (Available in Spanish. The  English and Portuguese versions coming soon)


Video: PAHO Collaborating Center for Nursing at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Perspectives and contributions of nursing to the  promotion of universal health.