Celebrating International Nurses Day

12 May 2024, 4:45 p.m.

Great Ormond Street Hospital joined healthcare organisations all around the world in marking International Nurses Day 2024.

International Nurses Day is a chance for the healthcare community to come together to celebrate the wonderful work nurses do for patients, families and colleagues across the globe.

At Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH), a team of volunteers delivered breakfast and afternoon tea to nurses who were on shift on Friday, and held a celebration event in the Lagoon canteen.

A nurse for 52 years and counting...

A nurse in a blue uniform is smiling in front of set of double doors. She's perched on a grey brick wall.

Di Robertshaw

Di Robertshaw, one of our Practice Educators, was one of those to be given an award at Friday's celebration event. Whilst Di began her nursing training at GOSH over 50 years ago, her link to the hospital goes even further back.

In the 1950’s Di’s sister was a long-term patient at Tadworth Court in Surrey, which was the country branch of the hospital designed to allow children to recuperate in fresh air.

On visiting days, the pair would spend time in the playground and stroking the donkeys at Tadworth, with Di joking ‘the donkeys are why I’m here, I used to love going there.’

Di’s sister trained to become a nurse at GOSH starting in 1964. A young Di went to a family open day at GOSH, she was asked by Matron Gwendoline Kirby (a formidable lady) what she wanted to be when she grew up and answered ‘I’m going to be a nurse here.’

Eight years later Di began her training in 1972. After completing her four-year course. Di became a staff nurse on the cardiac ward and intensive care area -  1A.

As her career progressed, she discovered her love of teaching and began to teach cardiac courses at GOSH. At one point she was even seconded to India to teach a neonatal and Paediatric Care course. She taught nursing at the linked university, represented GOSH at conferences worldwide, and in 2000 returned as a practice educator in the Heart and Lung Directorate at GOSH.

She said: “One of the first children I looked after as a cardiac nurse now comes to GOSH with their grandchildren. Cardiac is an area where you can learn something new every day.

“I get immense pleasure from teaching people how to provide the best care for cardiac children and their families.  I have been privileged to watch people develop from student nurses into sisters, advanced practitioners, matrons and even chief nurses.

“The role of nursing is to provide excellence in care, be it physical, psychological, emotional or compassionate care, in any kind of setting, from intensive care to home.

Di continues to work at GOSH on reduced hours from April and out of work time enjoys taking former GOSH nurses on tours of the hospital.

When asked what piece of advice she’d give to nurses who’re starting out, she said: “Learn something new every day. Ask questions, as you’ll never know everything there is to know, and share your knowledge.”

Planned industrial action at GOSH

Unions have announced that industrial action will be taking place at a number of hospitals in the coming months. This may include some staff at GOSH.

King Charles III is the Royal Patron of GOSH

His Majesty King Charles III has become the Royal Patron of Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children.

Athletes to mentor children and young people having treatment at Great Ormond Street Hospital

In a new partnership with Dame Kelly Holmes Trust, world class athlete mentors will support children and young people having treatment at Great Ormond Street Hospital.