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• The aging population increases demands for nurses, and the need for long-term caregivers continues to grow.
• Advances in medical science have allowed those with debilitating and terminal conditions to live longer, increasing needs for nursing skills.
• Health care cost containment initiatives and the increasing importance of managed care in the U.S. health care delivery system have had a great impact on the work environment of nurses. Just like professionals in other areas where "downsizing" has occurred in recent years, today's nurse is part of a leaner staff doing more work.
• At the same time, nurses are moving into new positions – nurse practitioners and doctor's assistants, for example.
• Registered nurses top the list of the 10 occupations with the largest projected job growth in the years 2002 to 2012, according to a 2004 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report.
National Nurses Day always is celebrated May 6 and opens National Nurses Week, May 6-12. In 2006, National Nurses Day falls on Saturday.
The week-long celebration accommodates the variety of schedules nurses are required to work.
National Nurses Week concludes on the birth date of Florence Nightingale.
National Nurses Day recognizes the contributions and commitment nurses make to quality health care in America.
The day and week are supported by nursing organizations such as the American Nurses Association, American Association of Colleges of Nursing, American Organization of Nurse Executives, and National League for Nursing.
The week celebrates the 2.7 million licensed registered nurses (RN's) in the United States; approximately 2.2 million of them are employed as RN's. In addition, 700,000 licensed practical nurses (LPN's), 600,000 Home Health Aides, and 1.4 million nurses aides comprise the field of nursing. (Sources: American Nurses Association; U.S. Department of Labor)
People who give cards, flowers and gifts for Nurses Day include family members and friends of nurses; people who work with nurses, such as doctors, administrators and other coworkers; and patients who spend a lot of time with their nurses and want to show appreciation.
Activities during National Nurses Week typically include banquets and recognition dinners, picnics, state and city proclamations, continuing education seminars, and community events.
Hallmark was the first greeting card company to create cards specifically for National Nurses Day when it introduced the line in 1992.
Although the Nurses Day line is relatively new, Hallmark has offered cards that recognize graduation from nurses' training since the 1950s.
Hallmark offers 24 greeting cards to celebrate and honor our nation's nursing professionals.
A colophon on the back of cards is a tribute to nurses.
Designs and messages in Hallmark's National Nurses Day card selection vary from heartfelt to humorous, but all acknowledge the talents of these busy professionals who dedicate themselves to the care of others.
Hallmark’s collection of Nurses Day cards includes those especially for mother, daughter, sister, male nurse, friend, and long-term caregiver.
For those who send more than one Nurses Day card (such as doctors, administrators, chronically ill patients with several nurses) Hallmark offers two value packs containing six Nurses Day cards for $3.99.
Hallmark Gold Crown® stores offer a wide variety of gifts, including candles, frames, soaps, mugs and accessories that are appropriate for Nurses Day.
Hallmark.com offers paper cards for Nurses Day with the option of adding a personal message on the card greeting. The cards can be mailed to the purchaser or the card recipient on a designated date. In addition, Hallmark.com sells Hallmark Flowers bouquets and appropriate gifts online for convenience.
In 1953 an official with the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare proposed that then-President Eisenhower proclaim a "Nurses Day," although he did not sign it.
Although other attempts at establishing a day recognizing nurses were not successful, President Nixon proclaimed a National Nurse Week in 1974.
In 1982, a joint congressional resolution designated May 6 as National Recognition Day for Nurses.
In 1991, the celebration was expanded to National Nurses Week (May 6-12) to accommodate the varied schedules of America's nurses.
To find the nearest Hallmark store (and identify a Hallmark Gold Crown® retailer to localize a story about Nurses Day), use the store locator on Hallmark.com.