ANA Hall of Fame Inductee
Sadie Health Cabaniss was a pioneer nurse in the truest sense. The Virginia nurse developed the first training school for nurses in her state that followed the Nightingale plan, and that school exists to this day as the School of Nursing at Virginia Commonwealth University.
She also convinced existing training schools in Virginia to form alumni associations, and then she called on representatives from these groups to come together in 1901 to create what now is known as the Virginia Nurses Association. As president of her state organization, she helped draft a measure that would regulate the practice of nursing in the Commonwealth. Once the bill was enacted in 1903, she was one of the original members of the Virginia State Board of Examiners of Nurses, and served as its president throughout her two terms.
In addition to her advocacy for the profession, she was a public health advocate. She founded the Nurses Settlement of Richmond, VA, where nurses provided care to patients in their homes. She also helped develop dispensaries for patients with tuberculosis who could not be admitted to local hospitals. And, she established the first rural visiting nurses service in Virginia and brought her public health skills and knowledge to other states, as well.