The Public’s Perception, The Nurse’s Reality

In our society a hospital is often the first stop for citizens that experience an illness or the last stop when needs are not met by a primary care facility. In hospitals doctors are responsible for betterment of the patients’ health. They have their responsibilities toward patients which they try to fulfil. This is possible only with the support of a work force comprising  mostly of young and energetic women commonly known as ‘sisters ‘ and professionally called as NURSES.  This doctor-nurse relationship is a key to patient care.

Nurses are the most trusted healthcare professionals. They are with patients throughout the continuum of life. Nurses are teachers, advocates, caregivers, critical thinkers and innovators. Nursing is an honorable profession and nurses are the heart and soul of the any healthcare system. Nurses make a difference in the lives of their patients each and every day. Nurses protect, promote, and optimize the health of those for whom they are responsible. They give not only their book knowledge; but a piece of their heart to each and every patient they look after.  No other profession offers the opportunity to make such a profound difference on the lives of people who truly need special care at their time of need.  In the developed world sometimes people decide to become nurses rather than doctors only to help patients directly and see them getting better.

With all their contribution towards society the unfortunate thing is the way nurses are looked upon. I want to clear a few misconceptions haunting nurses.  Nursing is not about ‘wiping butts all day’. Nurses are not just there for their ability to nurture and mother patients; they are there to use science and critical thinking to save lives. Nurses don’t follow always doctor’s orders but in turn the doctor relies heavily on the knowledge and observation of a nurse to make a good decision about patient care. Remember, when a nurse clearly knows the answer to your question and you say,” can you ask the doctor? ” you’re undermining their expertise and profession. Attendants with “do it for me” mentality, that feel justified using nurses as servants, make it harder for nurses to do their job.

Their night stay in hospitals is sometimes questioned. We forget that they are in the hospitals to serve us, our kith and kin and not for any recreation purpose. They work while we sleep and toil while we recover. It is the same hospital place were doctors (both male and female), attendants (male and female) also spend nights caring patients, then how does it become vicious for nurses. The 6Cs (care, compassion, courage, communication, commitment and competence) that we want to see in nurses is only possible if we possess few Bs (behavior, better morality, better mentality and broadmindedness).

The great thing about nurses is that they don’t actually care all that much about all these    misconceptions.

Doctor-bully epidemic is also a great concern. Most nurses have witnessed or been the victims of doctor bullying. Alexandra Robbins, quoting a nurse in his book” The nurses: A year of secrets, Drama, and miracles with the heroes of the hospital “,  writes , ” Every single nurse I know has been verbally debated by a doctor . Every single one”. This has to stop.

We must let these “MOTHERS OF HUMANITY” operate in a friendly environment that involves both recognition respect, a form of respect that ought to be accorded to every single person, and appraisal respect, a recognition of the relative and contingent value of respect modulated by the relationships of the healthcare professionals in a determined context.





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