This year on World Health Day, the World Health Organization highlights nurses and midwives. Check out these incredible nurses from history and how they made a difference.
Dorothea Lynde Dix was a Civil War superintendent of Army nurses and helped establish 32 hospitals in the U.S. Dix also advocated for the rights of prisoners and the mentally ill.
Susie King Taylor was born into slavery but went on to become the first Black female nurse in the Civil War. Taylor was also president of the Women's Relief Corps.
Florence Nightingale is considered the founder of modern nursing for a reason. She created the world’s first formal nursing school and the highest international distinction award for nurses is named after her.
Hazel Johnson Brown founded the Center for Health Policy and was the first Army Nurse Corps chief to hold a Ph.D. Before that, she worked in an emergency hospital in Harlem and eventually became the first Black female general in the United States military.
Clara Barton is the founder of the American Red Cross and was a nurse during the Civil War. She helped find missing soldiers and reunite them with their families.
Mary Jane Seacole learned medicine on her own and founded The British Hotel, which was used during the Crimean War to help wounded soldiers. Although she wasn't allowed to serve, she still helped soldiers on the battlefield.
Diane Carlson Evans, pictured on the right, founded the Vietnam Women’s Memorial. She was the head nurse for her unit during the Vietnam War.
After Sojourner Truth was freed from slavery, she worked for the National Freedman's Relief Association in Washington, DC. She often spoke to Congress about supporting nursing education and training programs for this organization.
Martha Jane Cannary is best known as Calamity Jane, a woman of the frontier and a gun-touting scout for the Army. But she was also a nurse for smallpox patients in South Dakota.