Who was Florence Nightingale? Find out by watching the video and reading along.
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Florence Nightingale was born in Tuscany, Italy, on 12 May 1820. This day is now celebrated internationally as International Nurses Day, in honour of her work as a pioneer of modern nursing.
Though Florence Nightingale was born in Italy, she and her family were British, and she was raised and lived in England for most of her life. Florence came from a family of social reformers, and was given the opportunity of an education unavailable to most women.
Florence showed great academic ability from a young age, especially in the collection and analysis of statistics and data. Indeed, Florence Nightingale is remembered as social reformer and statistician, as well as the founder of modern nursing.
It was during the Crimean War (1853-56) that Florence Nightingale became a famous name in the Victorian world. During this war, Florence took measures against the overcrowded and unsanitary conditions. Her efforts made her famous back home.
Upon return to England, Florence continued to push for improvements in health care methods, and collected and analysed data on death rates compared to sanitation. She was key in proving that poor living conditions were responsible for a huge number of deaths.
Nightingale established standards and training systems for nurses, ensuring experienced and professional health care was available across all social classes.
Declining to be buried at Westminster Abbey, Florence Nightingale died at the age of 90 and is buried with only a simple memorial at St. Margaret's Church, Hampshire.