- Queen's Nursing Institute
The Queen’s Nursing Institute (QNI) is a charity dedicated to the support of all community nurses (including District Nurses, Practice Nurses, Mental Health Nurses, Sexual Health Nurses and others) and to the well being of their patients in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The Queen's Nursing Institute Scotland is a separate charity based in Edinburgh.
The Institute provides professional and financial assistance for community nursing projects through its 'Fund For Innovation'. In recent years they have funded over a hundred nurse-led projects across England, Wales and Northern Ireland that range from tackling childhood obesity to improving the quality of life for sufferers of dementia.
The Institute partners with other organisations in order to deliver this programme, including The Alzheimers Society, The Multiple Sclerosis Society, the Community and District Nursing Association, and The Worshipful Company of Curriers.
The charity also has a special and long standing relationship with the National Gardens Scheme, originally established as a fundraising committee of the Institute and since the 1980s a separate charity. NGS remains a principal funder of the QNI's work.
In 2007 the QNI re-introduced the title of Queen's Nurse, almost 40 years after it was discontinued. The QNI welcomes applications for the title from community nurses with at least three years' experience and more information is available on the website.
The QNI operates a number of networks by which nurses can share professional information. The Homeless Health Initiative is a major network, supported by the Big Lottery Fund, that brings together nurses working with homeless people to share developments in this field.
Through its financial and personal assistance programme the QNI gives a broad range of financial and other support to nurses who are in need, through old age, ill health or hardship.
In 2008 the QNI launched the 'Nursing Number 1' campaign, which aimes to encourage nurses to take care of their own health.
The Institute also works to influence national policy affecting community nurses, for example responding to consultations around the NHS Next Stage Review.
The QNI is registered charity number 213128 and its website address is www.qni.org.uk .
History of the Institute
In 1859, Liverpool merchant and philanthropist, William Rathbone, employed a nurse called Mary Robinson to care for his wife at home during her final illness. After his wife's death Rathbone decided to employ Mary Robinson to nurse poor people, who could not afford medical care, in their own homes. The success of this early experiment encouraged him to build on the scheme and to campaign for more nurses to be employed in the community.
This was the beginning of 'District' Nursing. By the end of the 19th century, the idea had been taken up across the country and, with the help of Florence Nightingale and the approval of Queen Victoria, the movement became a national voluntary organisation responsible for setting standards and training nurses. The Queen's Nursing Institute was founded in 1887 and
chartered in 1889 as Queen Victoria's Jubilee Institute for Nurses. From 1928 -1973 it was known as The Queen's Institute of District Nursing.
2009 will see the 150th anniversary of District Nursing in this country, which the QNI plans to mark with special celebrations.
* [http://www.qni.org.uk Queen's Nursing Institute] official site
* [http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=366573&dopt=Abstract NCBI]
* [http://library.wellcome.ac.uk/doc_WTL039934.html "Sources Guide: Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting"] Wellcome Library
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