Global Health for Nursing . . . and Nursing for Global Health

Lisa Merry

Abstract


This article draws on the literature to present a conceptualization of global health (GH) that corresponds with the discipline of nursing and defines the contributions of nursing to GH. The author's perspective is that "health" should be defined and considered holistically to reflect the fact that GH involves more than the eradication of disease and that health as a fundamental right of every human being must be made explicit. "Global" refers to the supraterritorial links among the social determinants of health located at points anywhere on earth within a whole-world context. The focus of GH is the supraterritorial determinants and its ultimate objective is health equity for all nations and all people. The contributions of nurses are advocacy, healing and alleviating suffering through caring, and increasing nursing capacity globally. To truly advance the GH agenda, a new world order is needed, one in which political decision-making is guided by our shared humanity.

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