The first professional organisation for Icelandic nurses was founded in 1919. In 1978, nurses who graduated from the Nursing Department of the University of Iceland formed a separate organisation for academic nurses. On 15th of January 1994, the two nursing organisations merged to form Félag íslenskra hjúkrunarfræðinga (The Icelandic Nurses' Association).
The Icelandic Nurses' Association has approximately 4000 members of which 3100 are active. Membership is open to nurses with full nursing qualification and registered by the Icelandic Ministry of Health.
To become a member the form needs to be filled out and posted along with the registration from the Ministry of Health to the Icelandic Nurses' Association.
The organisation is a professional and trade organisation and its purpose is in particular:
- to work towards improving public health in Iceland by encouraging effective nursing and better and more economical health service in Iceland;
- to uphold the cause of nursing and nurses;
- to encourage the development of nursing as a science;
- to negotiate with employers on behalf of members of the association regarding wages and working conditions and other matters covered by the mandate for negotiation at the time;
- to defend other interests and rights of its members with regard to their work in the nursing profession, and to represent them.