CELEBRATED as the Lady With The Lamp for her tireless work helping injured soldiers in the Crimean War, she remains the most famous nurse in history.
And while today marks the 100th anniversary of her death, Florence Nightingale’s incredible legacy lives on.
The inspirational figure helped to transform nursing into a highly respected profession. And the school she founded in 1860 – now Florence Nightingale School Of Nursing And Midwifery at King’s College London – is today regarded as a centre of excellence for nursing education.
The Sun today meets modern day nurses who have followed in Florence Nightingales footsteps.
FLIGHT Lieutenant Vanessa, 41, from Eastbourne, East Sussex, is on her second tour in Afghanistan with Princess Mary’s RAF Nursing Service. She has also served in Iraq.
“Every day I witness something memorable – the bravery of the injured soldier, the life-saving work done by medics or the monumental effort the troops put into stretcher-bearing their injured to safety.
‘Being a nurse in the military is great’ … Vanessa Miles
Photo: Capt Leanne Christmas RE/MOD 2010
My mother and sister were nurses and I always wanted to be an emergency nurse.
I worked as a civilian nurse in the Field Hospital in Iraq and that inspired me to join the RAF in 2007.Being a nurse in the military is great. I feel really valued. We have lots of good kit and are highly respected.
I am the Officer Commanding of the Medical Emergency Response Team (MERT).
The MERT flies on a Chinook helicopter from Camp Bastion, retrieves casualties from the ground and assesses and treats them during the flight back to the military hospital.
Targeted by the Taliban when flying out to casualties, we are protected by armour and the skill of the Chinook aircrew. Apache helicopters also escort and protect us.
In essence we take the emergency room to the casualty and that can make a real difference.
The influence of Florence Nightingale lives on.
Even the helicopter landing site at the hospital is known as “Nightingale”.”
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