Local MSP Jackie Baillie has welcomed the launch of a new film to mark the 100th anniversary of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN).

MSPs had the opportunity to learn more about the organisation which represents NHS nurses at a Scottish Parliament reception hosted by Jackie Baillie.

Launched on 11 November to mark Armistice Day, the film remembers the founding of the RCN in 1916, at the height on WW1, when the overwhelming need for nurses in the UK and in Europe led to the establishment of a College of Nursing to champion consistent training for nurses.  Coming right up to date, the film captures 205 (Scottish) Field Hospital in action at one of their regular training exercises and includes interviews with some of their army nurse reservists.

Jackie said:

“I was delighted to host a reception at the Scottish Parliament to celebrate the role of the Royal College of Nursing in our NHS over the past 100 years. The experience of war in the 20th century transformed society in so many ways, including our health service.  From the advances in nursing during the First World War to the establishment of our NHS in the immediate aftermath of the Second World War, our NHS today owes a debt of gratitude to the sacrifice and bravery of the nurses who cared for others on the battlefield.”

Commenting on the film, Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Scotland Director Theresa Fyffe said:

“We were delighted to work with 205 (Scottish) Field Hospital and film them in action, not only to remember the founding of the RCN in 1916, but also to mark the crucial contribution that nurses make -; and the skills and knowledge which they gain -; as a result of their role as army nursing reservists.”

Colonel Helen Singh MBE -; the first female to Command the Scottish Field Hospital and take up this leadership role -; is a senior nurse in critical care in NHS Lothian and works between Edinburgh Royal Infirmary and the Western General Hospital.

“The film clearly shows the critical importance of teamwork,” says Helen, “and also the benefits which individuals gain as army nurse reservists, for example, in the skills and knowledge which they can then take back to their day job. It’s a two-way street, really”, says Helen in the film. “The NHS gains more clinically experienced individuals and the army develops individuals’ teamwork and leadership skills

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