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A Career in Nursing

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Nursing can be defined as a profession which assists individuals, families and communities to recover optimal health. Nurses form the largest part of the health care sector staff and are indispensable in any hospital. The term nursing has evolved through many generations and practices. Nursing is prevalent in some form or the other in almost all countries of the world. In the earliest sense of the word, it meant suckling/taking care of a baby.

Nursing has come a long way from that. Nowadays nurses are required at every level of medical care. With the considerable growth of the health sector, nursing is now a lucrative career option. At the basic level the nurse’s job include taking care of the patient. At the senior levels, the nurse is responsible for administering medication, tracking the progress of patients, helping in surgery, and last but not least, acting as second in charge to the medical practitioner.

Nursing is of course one of the most rewarding professions in terms of job satisfaction. It is not merely concerned with making money but also provides the gift of life to the patients it serves. A nurse chooses to spend her life helping other people, and acting as a beacon of hope. Nursing combines scientific knowledge and technology with compassion.

In almost all countries, entry into nursing practice is governed by law and a nurse needs special license. Across the nation, there are about 2.6 million registered nurses (RNs) and the figure is expected to grow considerably. In most areas, like Maryland, the average age of the nurse is increasing which means more and more nurses are retiring. This creates an inevitable vacancy for trained nurses and as the demand grows, there is a potential for higher beginning salaries. According to the U.S. Dept. of Labor, employment for registered nurses is expected to increase 23% between 2006 and 2016. Candidates for nursing jobs that are in highest demand include registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, certified nurse assistants, and certified medical assistants.

The basic aim of the nursing community is promote a profession based on exacting standards of discipline, competency and ethics. All the educational methods to learn nursing involve extensive study of nursing skills and knowledge of clinical methods. All nurses need basic knowledge of English, Social Sciences, Math and Science (Chemistry being essential.) Nursing courses offer a combination of theory and practical use. The trainee nurses are assessed by nursing experts. They are also required to attend seminars and study keenly various aspects of medicine. It is also essential that the nurses get practical training and are exposed to all hospital areas during the course of their training.

There are various types and categories of nurses such as the Clinical Nurse, who provides scientific and technological knowledge of the patient, the Advanced Practice Nurse, who provides advanced or specialized nursing techniques, the Educator and the administrator.

Military Nursing: Nowadays, many women, mostly single, divorced or widowed, are opting for a military nursing career. They work for the armed forces. This is also a good option since the nurses are provided with accommodation, food, and a stipend during training. People within the age of 17-24, with a minimum of 45 percent marks in English, Biology and chemistry can apply. Students are selected based on written and oral examinations followed by an interview.

A nursing university or a Nurse Training institute is also a good way to interact with other experienced professionals of the field. Nursing students and teachers usually work in a comfortable and amicable environment that facilitates better learning. Nurses also work in close association with doctors. They also become general advisers of patients’ families.

Nursing Processes are processes in which the nurse provides care to the patients. The different methods are:

Assessment: Involves the gathering of information about the patient’s physiological, psychological and spiritual status of the patient. This is stage one of the nursing process. The purpose of the assessment is to identify the patient’s problem. Usually the assessment is based on a nursing model. The main way to gather information is by Observation and patient interview.

Diagnosis: The identification of the patient’s problems. The problems of the patient may be emotional or spiritual rather than being merely physical.

Planning: In agreement with the patient, the nurse addresses each of the problems. For each problem, a measurable goal is set.

Implementing: The methods planned are then implemented and the plans are set in a tangible format. The nurse in this stage administers medication/treatments etc.

Evaluation: The nurse must evaluate and keep track of the patient’s progress. If progress is slow, or if regression has occurred, the nurse must change the plan of care accordingly. New problems may be identified at this stage, and thus the process will start all over again.

The different types of care that the nurse undertakes: -

Nurses often act as midwives, helping to bring a baby into the world. She also helps the mother after birth, helping her take care of herself and the baby.

Nurses perform the most common function of looking after unhealthy patients, helping them recover and looking after their general welfare.

Nurses help administer medicine and assist in medical surgeries.

Nurses perform their medical duties and treatments as assigned by the doctors.

Nurses assess, diagnose, plan, implement and evaluate their patient and his/her progress and report the results to the team of expert doctors or other members of the healthcare team.

Nurses acts as counselors to the patients and often their families as well.

Nurses provide educational counsel in their own communities thus spreading the word of health in the society.

Nurses also provide emotional and spiritual support to the patients, besides providing physical comforts, during troubled times.

Nurses also acts as advisers to patient’s families to give them the best mix of health care and social service in hospitals such as home care, rehabilitation, therapy etc.

Nurses also help dying patients face death and help the families to cope with the death in the family.


Nursing is a career, which requires strength of character and a lot of hard work. It is important that a good nurse should serve the patients faithfully without overstepping the boundary between professionalism and sentimentality.
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Popular tags:

 certified nurse assistants  nursing processes  hospitals  disciplines  professions  job satisfaction  medical practitioners  plans  patients  methods

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