Background on Florence Nightingale

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Florence Nightingale was born on May 12, 1820, named after her birthplace, Florence, Italy. Florence’s mother Frances Nightingale was from a family of merchants and enjoyed socializing with people of prominent social standing. Florence was the exact opposite; she avoided anything where she was the center of attention. Florence’s father William Shore Nightingale was a wealthy landowner. Her father was able to provide Florence with the best education. Florence Nightingale was always trying to help anyone around her, even from a young age. She ministered to the ill and poor people. At 16, she decided to pursue the career of nursing, trying to help as many people as possible. Her parents were upset and forbid her from becoming
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The hospital was on top of a large waste container, which contaminated the water and the building itself. Soldiers lay in their own body fluids on stretchers throughout the hallways as pests ran about. Supplies dwindled due to the increase in patients, even water was being rationed.
Florence set to work quickly. Her team and the wounded that were mobile, scrubbed the entire hospital. Florence spent a great deal of her time caring for the soldiers. She quickly gained the nick name “the lady with the lamp” and “the angel of Crimea” because she walked the halls at night with a lamp, while caring for the soldiers. The death rate dropped by two-thirds because she improved the sanitary conditions of the hospital. In addition to improving sanitary conditions, she also created a number of different patient services to improve the quality of their hospital stay including, meal services, laundry, and classroom services. Florence stayed in Crimea for a year and a half. She left once the war had ended. When she left in 1856, she was welcomed back with a hero’s welcome. She was rewarded by the Queen with an engraved brooch, which later came to be known as Nightingale Jewel, and also receiving $250,000 from the British government. Florence used the money to open the St. Thomas Hospital, and the Nightingale Training School for Nurses. Nightingale gave the nursing profession a boost in the popularity; it no longer was a lower class job.
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