Always the Children: A Nurses Story of Home and War
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Who Had the Most Influence on Your Nursing Career?
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Page Six Style. Now On Now on Page Six. The nursing profession continues to suffer from the influence of traditional values and cultural and social norms with respect to gender and professional status. Nursing remains a predominantly feminine and domestic activity that has a low social status and is discredited by society. The online forum used by Liu to explore nurses' perceptions of their work role on the basis of Chinese cultural and gender roles shows similar results. Participants mentioned that they would not encourage their children, especially their sons, to become nurses. The author argues that one of the main underlying reasons for this negative view of nursing is to be found in the traditional norms and values in Chinese culture.
The Chinese caring system, where persons with lower status should care for those with higher status, qualifies nurses as caregivers with low professional status and as subordinates to physicians. The nursing profession is strongly associated with caring, both by the public and by nurses themselves.
However, a discrepancy exists in the interpretation of the concept of caring. The studies show that nurses consider caring to be part of their professional identity, whereas the public associates caring with feminine qualities and unprofessionalism.
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Despite the technological developments in health care, nurses are considered to be caring persons and thus the most important requirement for becoming a nurse is to be able to care for others. Despite their individual cultural features, nurses across the world do have much in common when it comes to caring and their practice.
Nine studies mentioned the poor communication of nurses with the public and the invisibility of nurses in the media. A common theme in these studies is that nurses should do their best to improve the negative image of their profession, whereby keeping the goal to recruit new students in mind. Nurses need to counteract the effects of nurse stereotyping and improve the public image of their profession. A stereotypical public image is also partially responsible for the way nurses perceive and use power. According to Kemmer and Silva , nursing professionals have partly inflicted their invisibility in the media on themselves.
As long as nurses do not feel responsible for the distorted images of the roles they have performed and are still performing in health care and as long as they do not take a stand to correct these images, their invisibility will continue. Nurses need to raise public awareness about the various roles and opportunities both basic and advanced nursing practice have to offer. Around the world, nursing baccalaureate, master and doctoral degree programmes prepare nurses for a variety of nursing roles.
Nurses are educated to develop nursing theories and conceptual models, conduct nursing research and test nursing theories Meleis As a result, nursing is becoming more scholarly. The public needs to become aware that nursing research exists and that it is important to patient health. This awareness, in turn, will have a positive effect on the public image of nursing and will empower nurses.
This paper, however, shows that the public is not always aware of the qualifications nurses need for their profession. The public image of nursing is, to a large extent, affected by the invisibility of nurses and the way they present themselves. Ineffective communication skills influence the public perception of nurses. Nurses should work harder to communicate their professionalism to the public and they need to make clear what they really do. As nurses see caring for patients as a core value in nursing practice, it is important to demonstrate to the public that this entails more than just sitting by the patient's bedside, as portrayals of nurses in the media would sometimes lead the public to believe.
We argued in this paper that, to become more visible inside and outside healthcare organizations, nurses should present themselves more clearly to the public. This could be achieved by pursuing higher education and by working in a challenging work environment that offers nurses the opportunity to break away from the daily routine and that challenges them to deepen and broaden their knowledge and skills. Job rotation, gaining professional autonomy, opportunities for interprofessional learning and peer consultation could help nurses to become more visible within their organization and on a macro level, within society.
Nurses could, for example, create a more challenging work environment by embracing a more active attitude that includes participation in representative bodies and unions. Out of their professional identity, nurses can also adopt and develop new leadership roles. Nursing research can be helpful to further the profession and research outcomes could be used to improve the development of professional identity. The findings show a rather diverse picture of the actual view of the public on the nursing profession. The heterogeneity of setting, sample and population of the studies makes it quite difficult to explain these differences.
Furthermore, traditional cultural and social values determine the way the public perceives the nursing profession. One of the strategies is to promote nursing by giving lectures to spread information on the profession.
As educators and role models, they can establish a professional nurse identity. Professional development of nurses could also be realized by sharing their work experiences with other nurses. In addition, nurses should make better use of strategic positions, such as case manager, nurse educator or clinical nurse specialist to show what their work as healthcare professionals entails.
The public should be able to identify with nurses and the work they do. In the media, nurses are hardly seen as professional advisors or experts. A convincing number of nurses is needed to change the public opinion. Kalisch and Kalisch state that nurses can intervene in four steps: 1 getting organized; 2 monitoring the media; 3 reacting to the media; and 4 fostering an improved image.
We would like to thank Sonja Hintzen of the University Medical Center Groningen for her constructive advice and editing services. Volume 70 , Issue 2. The full text of this article hosted at iucr. If you do not receive an email within 10 minutes, your email address may not be registered, and you may need to create a new Wiley Online Library account.
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Please review our Terms and Conditions of Use and check box below to share full-text version of article. Background Nurses have become healthcare professionals in their own right who possess a great deal of knowledge. Design Discussion paper. Discussion The included studies show that the actual public image of nursing is diverse and incongruous. Implications for nursing Nurses should work harder to communicate their professionalism to the public. Conclusion To improve their public image and to obtain a stronger position in healthcare organizations, nurses need to increase their visibility.
Figure 1 Open in figure viewer PowerPoint. Careers in nursing are perceived as tedious and lacking challenges, creativity, responsibility, high wages, status and comfortable working conditions Nursing schools need to promote the nursing profession among the public. Lectures by nurses are very significant. The media present nursing in ways that neglect the official requirements of the profession Health care seems to be more heavily influenced by the media than by the official requirements of nursing.
To be human to another human – this is why we nurse
This caused some concern, because students should not start their careers with the shadows of historical hurts. This exposure is more helpful than harmful The nursing profession is highly respected. Nevertheless, a shortage of nurses persists. This image has an impact on the quality and quantity of the work performed This study reveals a relatively positive image of nursing on the internet.
Unfortunately, a downward trend in the depiction of nurse characteristics is evident. Nurses are depicted as the doctor's shadow and not as professionals To give more visibility to the nursing role professionals need to position themselves strategically and to educate the public on nursing TV, internet, news, press.
Participants valued professional interaction with colleagues and believed in their skills and flexibility as nurses. They felt respected by other professionals, but were less convinced that their career was going in the direction they had envisioned before starting Nurses worldwide have much in common, but still retain individual cultural features related to caring and their practice as nurses. All nurses narrated their stories from one dominant perspective, which is understood as their professional identity Participants did not shift their dominant perspective over time.
Participants identified themselves as nurses through integrating a nurse into self. The findings acknowledge the inseparability of identification with nursing and commitment to nursing Nurses as educators and role models are essential to the process of establishing a professional identity. The public's perception of the nursing profession tends to be influenced by these nursing stereotypes Nurses perceive their public image more negatively compared with how they see themselves, which causes image discrepancy.
This image is also a result of nurses' invisibility in the media Nurses perceive a lack of understanding from the public. The public perception of nursing does not match the perception of nurses themselves The incorrect portrayal of nurses is partially responsible for public perceptions of nursing and for how nurses perceive and use power.
The public image of nurses is a mirror of nurses' perceptions of self Nurses should do more to improve their image. If they have a negative image of themselves, the image they project to the public is equally negative.