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understand that the Plaistow nurses do visit the mother twice a day for a week after delivery, and once a day for another week. What I plead for is that it may be an express purpose of these rural nurses, if they do the delivery, etc., to see the babies, the penultimate or even older babies. The mothers are always delighted to show them if they are in good condition and make an excuse for them (they have a ‘‘cold’’ or something) if they are not in good condition. Last Work on District Nursing Editor: Nightingale’s interest in district nursing was strong even in her last working days. As late as 1898 she was making inquiries of the practice of district nurses. A letter to William Rathbone asked, ‘‘Do your district nurses teach (or your midwifery nurses) how to feed young children ? It is incredible what is given to quite young children by the tenderest mothers.’’163 She did not want the Metropolitan and National Association merged with the Queen’s Institute, fearing its standards would be lowered. A letter to Henry Bonham Carter in 1899 shows her asking about how to train nurses better (below), and there is very late correspondence with several district nurses. It seems that the last contact between Nightingale and Amy Hughes occurred in 1901, over a message Hughes asked Nightingale to send to an anniversary meeting of district nurses. Hughes said that she would call to pick it up. It is in a very weak hand (the second item below). Ulrike Linicke, on her departure from England in 1903, wrote Nightingale a last letter, reporting that her work ‘‘such as it is, is done,’’ and reminiscing on their meetings.164 The final (third) item is another message of encouragement to district nurses in South Australia, this time dictated. Source: From a letter to Henry Bonham Carter, Add Mss 47728 f192 Monday 13 June 1898 You know how interested I am in Bloomsbury, and will excuse my saying : do not give up Bloomsbury or merge it in ‘‘the Institute.’’ 163 Public Health Care (6:578). 164 Letter 6 March 1903, Add Mss 45815 f163. 896 / Florence Nightingale: Extending Nursing Source: From notes for a meeting with Katherine Perssè, Add Mss 47761 f184 29 November 1898 Ask Miss Perssè, district nurses, whether health lectures are given by the nurses or by the ladies. A nurse is the person [for] practical work. Not to go into the schools. (2) Their relation to the clergy? under their own committee, no formal patients, 3. President or chairwoman of the committee. . . . 4. Manual work not part of the bargain get it done by patients. . . . 5. Visiting lady to be in connection with the hospital? hospital to tell what the child should have? Children’s Aid Society, St Mary’s Kitchen. 6. What qualification is the lady superintendent supposed to have? paid? thoroughly trained nurse. 7. Do you pay your ladies? you pay under the technical education board? Source: Notes, Add Mss 45791 ff405-06 Thursday 24 November 1898 6:30 p.m. Frederick Verney. List of District Nurses (London. Miss Perssè see p 2, 4 Randolph Road, Edgeware Road, Paddington and Marylebone and Kilburn, St John’s Wood (all trained by Edith Bonham Carter and Miss Johnstone), Hampstead. East London District Association, Miss Cairney. Holloway, Miss de Lüttichan, Miss Myers.165 1 Edgeware Road: Miss Perssè. 2 Camberwell Home: Mrs Minet.166 Ten years ago. Miss Perssè not to say why is wanted, whether health lectures are given by the nurses or by the ladies. Relation to clergy? to the lady? President or chairwoman of the committee. Work: manual work not part of the bargain. . . . Visiting lady to be in connection with hospital. Hospital to tell what child should have. What qualification is the lady superintendent supposed to have, not paid (would not do to have any unpaid). 165 Edith Myers (c1873-1936) began training in 1898; she was later matron at Jubilee Memorial Hospital, Earl’s Court, and Gordon Hospital, Vauxhall. 166 Née Mary Rayner, she left nursing on her marriage in 1889 to William Minet, who later became a member of the Nightingale Fund Council. He provided the funds for a new district home and nursing association at Camberwell (see p 371 above). District Nursing / 897 Pay your ladies in touch with the medical officers of health, immediately under the organizing secretary, Miss Gecroft. . . . Bloomsbury Sq. Miss Hughes. Miss Gray,167 most...


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