Nurses account for by far the largest proportion of all health practitioners. Much of their time is spent on care of the skin yet the significance of this fact is hardly recognised by their leaders. The International Skin Care Nursing Group (ISNG) allied to the International Council of Nurses is making some important headway in bringing about a positive change in this respect.

Dermatologists worldwide are gradually acknowledging the crucial role that nursing has to play in strategic planning of skin care services. To draw attention to the significance of skin related health needs and build up a capacity to respond as a health care team, it is necessary to achieve a united voice from all key health professionals on the level of suffering, disability and poverty created by skin disease. Nurses have a key role to play in developing appropriate community-based skin care services around the world. They possess key observations and knowledge to contribute to the International Society of Dermatology’s Task Force for Community Dermatology. They have the capacity needed to meet global skin care and dermatological needs, promoting wellbeing and quality of life, whether supporting those living with chronic dermatoses or the infestations and infections that have a major impact in resource-poor countries.

Supervision, knowledge and basic care define the Nurse as the seminal character in offering qualitative skin care for all, they must be supported and encouraged to achieve the best healthcare we can deliver.

Warning There is still a trend for Nursing administration in the developing world to undervalue skin care training and experience. Several studies show that the Nursing Cadre, in spite of being the most in touch with the skin, has a low level of knowledge.

Action In Primary Health the nurse can and must be trained to a high level to become responsible for the carrying out of Triage, ensuring that patients are seen in a timely manner by appropriately trained healthcare professionals, including nurses, in an appropriate setting.

"I’m currently training as a nurse and have wanted to since I was treated so well by a nurse when I was little. Helping establish health centres in developing worlds is something I’m passionate about."