When Gallup asked respondents to rate the honesty and ethical standards of people in various fields, nurses came in number one with 85 percent of those asked responding “Very high/high.”

Coming in a significant 10 percent higher than pharmacists, the next most-trusted profession, and 15 percent higher than medical doctors and engineers, who both ranked at 70 percent, nurses are the ones we seem to really trust. (As opposed to car salespeople and members of Congress, who came in last and second-to-last, respectively.)

We have the acclaimed Florence Nightingale to thank for the nurses who take care of us. In 1860, Nightingale paved the way for professional nursing with the founding of the Nightingale Training School at St. Thomas' Hospital in London, the first secular nursing school in the world. She campaigned tirelessly to improve health standards, while publishing more than 200 books, reports and pamphlets on hospital planning and organization — many of which are still widely read today. Plus, she invented the pie chart!

And with Nightingale in mind, National Nurses Week was established; it runs from May 6 (which is National Nurses Day) through May 12 (which is Nightingale’s birthday). If you're looking for ways to mark the week, visit the American Nursing Association.

Related healthcare stories on MNN: