means taking care of and looking after the sick, the injured,
the young, the old or the helpless, with love and sympathy.
lt is difficult to say at what point in history nursing was
organised in a scientific way. Yet it is easy to understand
that it must be as old as man's feeling for his suffering
fellow men. For only sympathy and love could move one human
being to feel sorry for someone in distress, to look after
him in sickness and try to do something for him and to restore
him to health.
regards nursing very important. Our Holy Prophet (peace be
upon him) visited the sick regularly, comforted them and spoke
kind words to them. He would go, even to inquire after his
ailing enemies. He urged the Muslims to help those who were
sick or suffering. On the battlefield, all Muslim soldiers
were always very kind to the sick, old and the injured. They
never killed their wounded enemies. Muslim ladies were very
active on the battlefield giving water to the soldiers and
tending the wounded and the sick. Hazrat Ghifaria, who accompanied
the Holy Prophet in the Battle of Khyber, was a very good
nurse. When the battle was won, the Holy Prophet presented
a necklace to her. In due course, the Holy Prophet established
a hospital in Medina and placed it in the charge of a very
competent nurse, Hazrat Rufaida by name. Among those who helped
in looking after and nursing the patients in this hospital
were Hazrat Fatima, the youngest and the dearest daughter
of the Holy Prophet and Hazrat Asma, the daughter of Hazrat
Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him).
was not at all popular in the beginning. Parents did not allow
their daughters to become nurses. This can perhaps be best
shown in the story of the girl, who in 1851, became the founder
of modern nursing and one of the greatest women in history.
Her name was Florence Nightingale.
Nightingale was born in the town of Florence in Italy in 1820.
Her parents were wealthy and cultured English people, and
expected her to marry into a noble family. But, she had other
ideas. At seventeen, she felt that the aim of her life was
to serve suffering humanity. When she was twenty-four she
decided that she should become a nurse. "Nothing is nobler
than nursing", she declared. Her family was shocked to
learn this. Everybody opposed her. But she would not give
in. At last, after seven years of struggle, she was allowed
to go for training at the Kaiserswerth Institution of Nursing
1853, she was given the management of a small hospital for
sick women in London. In 1854, when there was a war between
England and Russia, the British Government asked her to go
to the Crimea to manage the military hospitals there. She
played a great role in the Crimean war. The nation thankfully
offered her a purse of £ 45,000. With this money she founded
an institution for training nurses in London.
present, there are many training institutes for nurses in
our country. A large number of Pakistani girls from good families,
after being trained in these institutes, are working in hospitals,
clinics and nursing homes.