Journal of Professional Nursing

Special issue to celebrate 35 years of publication of Nursing Praxis in Aotearoa New Zealand


Nau mai, haere mai ngā neehi katoa o Aotearoa me o te Ao

Welcome, welcome to nurses of Aotearoa and the World


In November 1985, Nursing Praxis in New Zealand was launched as the first peer-reviewed nursing journal to be circulated in Aotearoa New Zealand. In 2020 we were proud to celebrate 35 years of continuous publication and renamed the Journal to Nursing Praxis in Aotearoa New Zealand, acknowledging our country’s bicultural partnership under Te Tiriti o Waitangi and our commitment to tangata whenua (Māori, the Indigenous people of the land). This milestone coincided with the 2020 International Year of the Nurse and Midwife, celebrating the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale's birth, though was soon overtaken by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

As this Special Issue is released, we acknowledge that the pandemic is far from over and our overseas peers continue to  face enormous challenges in harrowing circumstances. Globally, the daily recorded cases of COVID-19 are the highest yet. The poorest of those communities have suffered the greatest losses and are now faced with the inequitable distribution of vaccines. We can only begin to imagine the long-term impacts of COVID-19 on the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities and the health requirements of the future. Health workers are exhausted and health services stretched beyond capacity. COVID-19 reported deaths are estimated to be 17,000 health workers (Amnesty International, 2021) and 2,710 nurses (International Council of Nurses, 2021). These figures are likely to be considerably underreported and rising. The World Health Organization designated 2021 to be the International Year of Health and Care Workers “in appreciation and gratitude for their unwavering dedication" (para 1).

This Special Issue celebrates nursing and challenges nurses to continue their work to deliver healthcare and promote equity for all communities. Nurses: A Voice to Lead - A Vision for Future Healthcare is this year's theme for International Nurses' Day on 12th May 2021, acknowledging the essential work of nurses through the pandemic. While here, in Aotearoa New Zealand, we have had relatively few cases of COVID-19 cases per se (2,600 to date), we know many of our whānau and communities have been adversely affected through loss of jobs, income, and schooling; separation; and isolation. The impact on mental health will be far-reaching. Through these times, nurses have shown resilience and creativity, to promote health and protect their communities. Amidst the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination programme, we embark on the implementation of the recently announced Health Reform White Paper (Health and Disability Review Transition Unit, 2021). Now more than ever, we need nurses to bring the breadth and depth of their knowledge and skills to be fully engaged, advocating for, and leading the development of future, equitable health services for the communities they serve.

This Special Issue honours the investment made to the scholarship of nursing in Aotearoa through this Journal, by its instigators, contributors, reviewers, and Editorial Board members since its inception. 

Karakia / Blessing

 karakia small

Approach to the Special Issue

This issue looks 'back to the future'. Following a review of the back issues, articles from three authors were selected to represent what we, the Editorial Board, believe signal topics central to nursing’s mahi (work) towards health and wellbeing, and health equity in Aotearoa. We asked a range of thought-leaders in nursing to reflect on the articles, to consider the contribution they have made, and to comment on their continued relevance for contemporary nursing practice. Each thought leader was given a mandate for incisive and inspirational commentary, identifying practical and concrete steps that nursing and nurses could take across education, practice, research, scholarship, policy, and service provision. Additionally, we provide a synopsis of each article together with the article's connection to the contemporary context.

The Special Issue opens with an editorial from Margareth Broodkoorn, previous Chief Nursing Officer at the Ministry of Health (2019-2021). Following the editorial, Dr Martin Woods provides an introduction to the articles. The work of the three authors is then presented in sections. Each section includes a synopsis of the article and its contemporary context, as well as links to the original article(s). Thought leaders provide kōrero (commentaries) in each of the sections. The issue concludes with a final critique from Professor Jenny Carryer CNZM.

Links (highlighted in red) allow you to move up and down the page; to salient online reports and to previous Nursing Praxis articles, which open in a different tab. We invite you to provide any comments, critiques, or reflection at the end of this page/issue.

An overview of contents

Editorial and Introduction by Margareth Broodkoorn and Dr Martin Woods

Section 1: Jocelyn Keith's prescient question about the human right to health and healthcare

pdf Keith 1987 

With commentaries by Professor Stephen Neville, Dr Catherine Cook, and Marie-Lyne Bournival

Section 2: Dr Irihapeti Ramsden's powerful petition for cultural safety: Kawa Whakaruruhau

pdf Ramsden 1990a 

With commentaries by Professor Denise Wilson, Hemaima Hughes, Dr Jennifer Roberts, and Dr Fran Richardson

Section 3: Dr Jill Wilkinson's discourse analysis of the sources of power and agency for nursing

pdf Wilkinson 2008a  pdf Wilkinson 2008b

With commentaries by Dr Joy Ashley Bickley, Dr Helen Rook, Dr Rhonda McKelvie, and Dr Sue Adams

A final critique by Professor Jenny Carryer

Acknowledgements, references, and an opportunity to provide comments, are provided at the end of the page.

Note: Te reo Māori (the Māori language): Nursing Praxis encourages the use te reo Māori terms where appropriate. Many concepts in te reo do not have a direct translation into English, because often they are concepts that are culturally located. Please see the glossary on our website for further information: Māori Research and Te Reo.

We very much hope you enjoy reading this issue and that it offers the opportunity for reflection and dialogue for nursing students and nurses in all scopes at all stages of their career.

Ngā manaakitanga

Sue Adams PhD RN & Caz Hales PhD RN


Citation: Adams, S., & Hales, C. (2021). Special issue to celebrate 35 years of publication of Nursing Praxis in Aotearoa New Zealand: Introduction. Nursing Praxis in Aotearoa New Zealand, 37(1), 5-8.