DIVERSITY is being celebrated at Musgrove Park Hospital to mark International Nurses Day.

The Taunton-based hospital has seen in the celebratory day with a packed schedule of activities today (May 11).

Nurses were celebrated in the event that saw events such as a bed making competition, live music, and a cake sale.

The army also had a display up at the event, as well as having old uniform and equipment available for visitors to see.

Caroline Upton, matron, who helped organise the event, said: "We are celebrating the diversity of the nursing team today.

"This includes diversity in their job roles as well as where we are all from, especially our international colleagues.

"It's lovely to have the army here as the hospital started off as an army hospital, it's a part of our history. It's great to be able to display the progress starting from our origins to modern day."

The nurses were marking where they were form on a world map at the hospital. Some of the nurses come from across Europe, as well as coming from as far as India and parts of Africa.

The staff say that seeing the progress the hospital has made over the years is interesting and they are looking forward to changes in the future.

Hayley Peters, chief nurse, said: "The diversity makes us rich.

"We all have different skills and cultures, things like a good sense of humour is a fantastic asset.

"We are moving towards being a paperless hospital. We will be making changes like doing digital observations which patients will be seeing in a different way, and this will be at the bedside instead of at a desk."

One of the nurses, Marcie Soco, who works in critical care, first came to the hospital 18 years ago.

"Nursing was never my plan, I was scared of hospitals when I was younger.

"My grandad was taken into hospital when I was in the Philippines. That's what made me want to go into nursing, I saw them working and wearing their uniforms.

"Seeing how hospitals work around the world, the protocols and procedures are different, but the care is always there.

"The passion is the same. Nursing is a calling.

"It's very emotional in here. You aren't just looking after the patient, but their families too. That can be spiritually, mentally and physically."

Ms Soco said that she was pleased to see the way the hospital had come together to celebrate the day.

"It's like a melting pot of culture here. Seeing the celebrations is majestic."