Sister Lourdu Mary: Nun of a kind

Sister Lourdu Mary Nagothu lives an extraordinary life. The Catholic nun, who imbibed the spirit of selfless service to the letter during her long training to become a nun, has shot to fame for winning a prestigious award in HIV nursing from the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care (ANAC) from America. She was selected for developing and implementing the world’s first masters’ curriculum in HIV/AIDS.

Sister Nagothu, who is a member of the Sisters of Jesus, Mary and Joseph Congregation, will receive the award at a ceremony on November 4, the final night of ANAC’s annual conference at Dallas, Texas in the United States.

Sister Nagothu is the director of nursing at Bel-Air Hospital and the principal of its College of Nursing at Panchgani, a hill station in Satara district, about 100km from Pune. The hospital and nursing college is an Indian Red Cross Society project managed by Missionary Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament priests as well as the Sisters of Jesus, Mary and Joseph. Significantly, the international recognition and award came her way as the first batch of medical nursing students, who studied the nun’s curriculum, completed the course this year from the Maharashtra University of Health Sciences headquartered in Nashik.

The ANAC award is great booster for nurses in the country as it recognised an outstanding nurse, who working on a resource-limited setting, significantly impacted the community by promoting excellence in HIV nursing care.  Founded in 1987, ANAC is the world’s leading nursing organisation responding to HIV/AIDS.  Based in Cleveland, Ohio, USA, it has more than 40 chapters located around the world.

Bel-Air College of Nursing at Panchgani, affiliated to the Maharashtra University of Health Sciences, started admissions in 2006.