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Description de l’éditeur

Community-based nurses had been at work in some Canadian cities for at least three decades by the time the Canadian Public Health Association was founded in 1910. (1) Journals such as the American Journal of Nursing, the Visiting Nursing Quarterly, and the Canadian Nurse provided the profession with compelling accounts of nurses working in a variety of roles to prevent illness and promote the health of vulnerable populations such as: immigrants; the urban poor; infants and children; and isolated families living in rural and northern Canada. The terms "visiting nurse" and "district nurse" were used interchangeably in the journals and textbooks of the time, and in all cases, these nurses were defined as public health nurses (PHNs). Lillian Wald, a registered nurse and social reformer who founded the Henry Street Settlement in New York City in 1895, coined the term PHN in 1893 to describe the nurses who worked in poor and middle-class communities rather than in hospitals or in the homes of wealthy employers. (2) Little is known about the earliest Canadian PHNs, but most were likely employed singly or in pairs by charitable or religious organizations who established small community-based outreach programs in many parts of Canada. For example, it is known that a diet dispensary in Montreal employed a district nurse as early as 1885. (1) Toronto's Nursing-at-Home Mission was established in 1889 to support two nurses who worked with poor families living near the Children's Hospital. (1) In 1897, the Victorian Order of Nurses (VON), a national district nursing association modelled on the British Institute of Queen's Nurses in Britain, was founded in Ottawa. (3) In many communities, the VON contracted with local governments or charities to provide PHN programs, and they have continued to do so throughout their history. As well, many voluntary PHN programs were founded by local organizations during this era, including the Margaret Scott Nursing Mission (Winnipeg, 1905), (4) the Lethbridge Nursing Mission (1909), (5) and the St. Elizabeth Visiting Nurses' Association (c.1910). (6)

Professionnel et technique
1 juillet
Canadian Public Health Association

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