Nurses Week is May 6 – 12, 2020. Let’s start planning!

This planning guide is designed to help you create your own unique Nurses Week celebration. We can modify these recommendations together to best suit your timing and budget. We have provided a full week’s worth of sample activities, but if your organization’s budget is tight and it is difficult to host a full week of activities, then consider promoting Nurses Day. Special activities or recognition can take place on any day of Nurses Week.



  • Meet with your hospital marketing/community relations director regarding Nurses Week
  • Begin planning special events


  • Prepare a news release for internal newsletters and publications
  • Hang posters in visible locations throughout your location
  • Send invitations for events

May 1 - 5

  • Confirm times and complete logistics of events with appropriate departments

May 6 -12: Nurses Week

  • Kick-off Event and Open House
  • Employees’ Open House
  • Patients’ Day
  • Recognition Luncheon
  • Community Outreach

Week Following

  • Send post-event news releases with photos to the local media
  • Send thank-you letters to all who assisted in the Nurses Week

Photo Gallery


Day 1 – Kick-Off Event and Open House -- Ideas and Checklist

Hold a special kick-off event along with an open house.

    Develop a brief opening ceremony.
  • Send invitations to the homes of the nursing staff.
  • Decorate various areas with Nurses Week posters and promotional items.
  • Provide light snacks and refreshments, such as soda and cookies.
  • Make arrangements for providing hospital tours and provide name tags for guests.

Day 2 – Employee and Volunteer Open House -- Ideas and Checklist

Plan a department open house to introduce employees and volunteers to the nursing department.

  • Arrange for refreshments or snacks.
  • Create an invitation and flyer using the Nurses Week logo and images to announce an open house or post throughout your facility.
  • Arrange for someone to take photographs during your event.
  • Assign team members to create a word-search puzzle or riddle about the departments and award prizes to those who successfully complete the puzzle.
  • Have attendees sign in and drop their names into a bowl when they arrive and hold a raffle and give away prizes.

Day 3 – Patient’s Day -- Ideas and Checklist

Let the patients in your hospital know you care by dedicating a day in their honor.

  • Provide refreshments such as cookies and punch.
  • Create 8 ½ x 11 Nurses Week coloring sheets using the logo and distribute to children in the hospital for a coloring contest.
  • Display the posters colored by the children throughout the week.
  • Decorate wheelchairs and nurse’s stations with balloons.
  • Arrange for a photographer to capture the interaction.

Day 4 – Recognition Luncheon for Nurses -- Ideas and Checklist

Salute the dedicated nurses who make contributions throughout the year. Hold a special luncheon in their honor and present “Excellence in Nursing” awards and gifts.

  • Give your awards ceremony a name such as the “Reach for the Star Award” or “Showcase of Nursing.”
  • Arrange for special recognition certificates to be given to staff members.
  • Deliver bouquets of balloons to various departments.
  • Provide giveaway items to all house and medical staff.
  • Arrange for someone to take photographs of your event and special award-winners.

Day 5 – Community Outreach -- Ideas and Checklist

Acquaint the community with your facility’s nursing team. Provide plenty of opportunities for media coverage.

  • Conduct hospital tours and offer free health screenings.
  • Invite the local media to cover the event.
  • Send Nurses Week invitations to local schools, churches, daycare centers and senior centers.
  • Arrange for snacks and refreshments.
  • Arrange for giveaways.