Nursing & Midwifery

Ruth Breen, 2014

Display No. 51

Nightingale was fortunate to have had financial support from her family so that she could pursue her work as a calling rather than a source of income. Not all people have that luxury but, within nursing, many still embody a sense of calling to their profession. Midwife Ruth Breen became a millionaire overnight with a winning lottery ticket in 2014 but chose to continue working as a midwife stating:

“I love my job, it’s hard work at times and can be long hours, but I feel it is a real privilege to do what I do and couldn’t imagine giving it up. It really feels like a weight has just been lifted off my shoulders, I no longer have to worry”.

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Nightingale is respected worldwide for her pioneering role in developing the nursing profession, her statistical work, and her evidence-based approach to healthcare. In honour of her bicentenary the World Health Organisation have named 2020 the Year of the Nurse and Midwife.

In our special exhibition, you will find out about objects, people and places which tell interesting stories about Florence’s life and legacy. You’ll discover artefacts from her life, people she both inspired and challenged, and places she helped to shape. There’s many more insights too!

Please click on the different sections of her famous coxcomb diagram to explore various aspects of her life and legacy. We hope you enjoy exploring!