As part of the 150 years of health visiting celebration in 2012, I spent a bit of time looking at the Wellcome Collection in London. They hold a large body of our associations historical artefacts and it was truly fascinating waiting for the boxes to be brought to the viewing room, where I’d open the lid and see another treasure from a time long forgotten.
This searching gave me an interest in looking through old journals. The earliest I found was from 1939, although at that point it was called ‘The Woman Health Officer’ rather than its current title of Community Practitioner. More recent editions had been scanned and I looked through the files of journals spanning about 10 years. There were two pages from more recent journals that caught my eye. First was a page from 2006 which heralded my arrival at CPHVA. The second was from 1990 and featured a two page spread from that year's health visitor week.
I have wanted for a while to repeat the event and was hoping to do this in 2015. In the end, with all the demands of the end of the HV plan and then the transfer to local authority commissioning (in England) this wasn't to be, but I'm really pleased to let you all know that 2016 will be the year that our #HVweek returns!
My aims, which I hope you support, are to have a week where we celebrate the health visiting profession. As our health visiting membership spans across the UK (and wider) this will be truly international. It won't just be a virtual week either! As well as the now obligatory social media sessions and online blogs, we’ll also be encouraging as many members as possible to hold and host events across the UK. We’ll be doing likewise and ensuring that as many of our members as possible are involved!
One question that I know our members will ask is what about a school nurse week and a community nursery nurse week. My hope is that when I review the journals in 20 years time I won't just see reports on a really successful #HVweek but on a #SNweek and #CNNweek too!
If you want to sign up to support #HVweek, please click here. There's an option to sign up as; an individual supporter, a supporting organisation or a supporting university.
Please join us, everyone that loves health visiting is welcome!
Professional officer, Unite in Health