Who are nurses and what is the definition of nursing?
If you are considering becoming a nurse this may be something you have asked yourself. Many nurses are people just like you that have a passion for taking care of other people. Many people enter the nursing profession because they want to help other people.
The American Nurses Association (ANA) uses this definition of nursing.
"Nursing is the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, alleviation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response, and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, communities, and populations."
This nursing definition is published in the Nursing Scope & Standards of Practice, 2004 edition (page 7). This book published by the ANA is the standards of nursing that we are held to. If you are entering nursing or are a nurse I strongly recommend you read through this book.
Who are nurses?
The dictionary definition of a nurse is:
A person formally educated and trained in the care of the sick or disabled
Once you are involved in the nursing profession there is much more to it
than caring and taking care of people. Nurses take care of patients
both physically and emotionally.
We take care of our patients medically following the primary care providers (PCP) orders. We also perform assessments and evaluate our patients, reporting any significant findings back to that PCP.
We help our patients emotionally by offering support and care, and just being there when they need to talk or sometimes cry.
We are also patient advocates. We are the voice of our patients and need to speak on their behalf to ensure they receive safe and appropriate care. This includes appropriate use of their health insurance benefits.
Note:I use the term PCP here rather than physician or doctor because the medical profession today includes nurse practitioners. These nurse practitioners perform under and with a physician and they write orders and care for patients like a physician. This is a great accomplishment for nursing to have advanced to this level.