Nursing is a profession that is greatly admired, and a highly sought after career by many.
A nurse is usually the first person that a patient will see at a clinic or hospital. The nurse will usually set the tone of the visit meaning more than likely they are the ones that will calm the patient if there is any anxiety. These professionals must adjust differently to each patient and each situation they encounter.
So one may ask what is the definition of nursing? This paper will define nursing, show the uniqueness of this profession, how the concept of caring is part of nursing and will have a personal definition as well as personal experiences about nursing.What is Nursing and how is unique in health careThere are so many words that can define nursing, however, there are some that just stand out more than others. To define nursing, it circumscribes the autonomy and works collectively to care for individuals, their families, and communities (Emerson, 2017). Nursing is about communication and how to listen to patients and their families. Nursing is about building a relationship with the patient and setting goals to improve the health of the patient (Eriksson, 2018). A nurse must be willing to adapt and to change the way she thinks for each patient, as all patients are distinct individuals.
Nursing is using the knowledge and theories that have been learned to help care for and retain the health of all patients. Nursing is a science and the procedures that a nurse uses in their daily practice are the art of this science (Manhart Barrett, 2017). Nursing encompasses the Code of Ethics that a nurse must practice as well as applying their own values and expertise to ensure that the patient is getting the best possible care no matter their age, race, religion, or background. Some refer to nursing as a calling, as in the case of Florence Nightingale.
It is not just applying the knowledge that one learns, it about performing the small jobs such as feeding someone when they cannot feed themselves, changing bedding, helping them get dressed (Emerson, 2017). It is the small things in nursing that the patients will remember and how they look at nursing as a whole. There is so much to nursing, more than just a definition, the uniqueness as a whole; the caring that is involved and personal experiences that make nursing what it is. What makes nursing so unique is that there are limitless amounts of opportunities; there is not one set path for nursing. Nurses’ posses a multifaceted viewpoint of caring for individuals such as they must be aware and be sensitive to the needs of the patient as well as their family.
They combine the medicine based practice and treatment strategies with a human based practice that deals with the patients’ emotions (Clarke & Bleich, 2018). The unique work of nursing is transcendent, involving more than just the usual passing out medicine, paperwork and communicating with other healthcare providers. There are rare moments in nursing where nurses help individuals find their life in the midst of turmoil, this is not taught in school, this is when a nurse shows up and is allowed in to make a difference in that persons’ life (Grice Robinson, 2013).
Nursing is unique as it forms nurses into the people they are today. Each day they are with a patient and their situation, it not only makes a difference in the life of the patient, but in the life of the nurse. They are not the same person they were before meeting other people and what a nurse does has an impact on the life of the patient and the nurse as well (Karnick, 2010). Another reason nursing is so unique especially in the United States is that it is not just for one gender. It is not limited to women only; more men are turning to the nursing profession (Karnick, 2014)Nursing Profession Huber (2015) stated that professionalism is not just defined by words however by ones actions and behaviors. Nurses are held to high ethical standards, which are shown in the ANA’s Guide to Code of Ethics. As a professional, nurses will act on behalf of the patients, their families and communities with their best interest as the key factor. They will show compassion and humility as well as be sensitive to patient’s culture and religious beliefs (Yoder, 2017).
Karnick (2014) stated that another way to define professionalism is through formal and extensive training. Nursing requires at 2-4 years of college training as well as passing the licensing examination. Just getting a degree is not enough for nursing; they must attend continuing education courses so that they will remain informed on new medical procedures and information (Johnson, 2015). As a professional, one must have attributes such as Good Communication skills, work well with others, practice selflessness and be competent. In the profession of nursing, these professionals exhibit all of these attributes (Johnson, 2015). A nurse should always put the patients’ needs and interest first as well as be able to communicate with the patient, their family and other caregivers to achieve the best results for the patient. A nurse must be competent and able to make decisions based on their knowledge so in order to do this; they must be up-to-date with all the current information pertaining to their particular field (Johnson, 2015). Huber (2015) stated that the public regards the profession of nursing as the most devoted profession above, pharmacists, teachers and even physicians.
One can see this, as the nurse is the person that will sit with the patient, hold their hand to calm them down and even clean them if necessary. Not that the other professions are ever to be overlooked, however, a nurse will always hold a special place in the hearts of their patient. Concept of Care Some nursing Theorists believe that the concept of caring is a trait of nursing that makes nursing stand out more than the other health care professions (Cook & Peden, 2017). Nurses form a bond with their patients, their families and other health care providers that starts with the concept of caring.
Cook and Peden (2017) stated that caring is not just something a nurse does or just an ordinary attitude they express, it is morally knowing that a nurse is there to protect and strengthen the dignity of every patient. Some patients are unable to care for themselves and it is during this time that they may feel inadequate and feel that their life is worthless. It is up to the nurse to care for them in a way using their knowledge and awareness to safeguard the dignity of the patients (Cook & Peden, 2015). Sometimes a nurse may not even have words to say when they are with a patient and to some patients; just being there is enough. Having a nurse that is present with the patient that they can lean on physically and emotionally through whatever they are going through reestablishes the dignity that could have been lost (Campbell & Davis, 2011). This is the type of caring that patients and families are looking for, being there when they can be someplace else, sacrificing their time to be present with the patient. Caring is also about establishing a trust relationship with the patient and families.
Listening to the patient, having the attention on the patient, and being open to their needs and concerns will help build this trust relationship (Adamski, Parsons & Hooper, 2009). If a nurse can build trust with the patient, then they will open up to the nurse and the nurse can care for them in a better way.Personal Definition and Mission of Nursing My personal definition of nursing is that it is a selfless act of caring and giving. As a nurse, you will run into people everyday that may not be the same color, same religion or same ethnicity as you are.
In order to give them the best care possible, a nurse has to put all differences aside and focus on what is best for the patient, all the attention must be on the patient. This is not saying that a nurse must not do something that she does not believe in, however, she can be there and not say a word to the patient about anything that is conflicting between them. Just being present in the room and building a relationship with the patient will bring more joy to both of them. It is having a desire to help those that maybe cannot help them self. This world we live in is a give and take world, the only problem is that there are not enough people willing to give what it takes. My mission as a nurse is to be that person, the one willing to give what it takes to make a difference in the life of other people.