History of Nursing in the Last 100 Years Essay

Nursing profession has evolved significantly in the last 100 years, from the time when nurses had to be submissive to matrons and take orders from them without digressing, to the current situation where nurses handle complex and diverse roles in healthcare. However, significant changes started to be witnessed following the advent of scientific revolution. Importantly, the Spanish war in the 19th century played a significant role in aiding the development of nursing profession, with nurses required to take care of military personnel (Judd, Sitzman, & Davis, 2010). Over the years, nurses have been highly recognized for their efforts in care giving activities, creating awareness in the community about various health problems and offering emotional support to patients and their relatives. Generally, modern nursing is said to have developed in early 19th century in Britain and Germany. The practice spread all over the world by the 1900, having grown very fast in the later years of 19th century to become a professional career practice. This was facilitated by the tendency of hospitals to develop schools of nursing that had a lot of attraction to ambitious women from various backgrounds. The Nightingale era schools stopped operating from the 19th century and the hospitals took over the work of controlling nursing schools. Here, clinical experience became more recognized than book academic performance only.

Currently, humanitarianism has enhanced nursing practice in RN oriented hospitals, schools, colleges, and universities; this has brought access nearer to people who are willing to practice nursing as a career. Modern nursing is generally the same practice that has existed over the years, though there are great advancements that allow nurses to carry out their jobs more effectively and efficiently. However, current nursing care is challenged with increased patients needs and requirements that have to be taken care of, thus expanding the scope of responsibilities for nurses. Indeed, modern nursing practice goes beyond the conventional care, thus it includes a wide array of duties, such as ensuring that patients take medication as prescribed by physician, following up patients healing progress, clerical work and statistics analysis, and supervising dietary procedures of all patients.

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In contemporary health care system, nursing is always accompanied by many issues that are very important for good health maintenance. For instance, it is crucial for nurses to make sure that patient keeps a healthy diet. Nurses assist doctors in operatingrooms, during ward rounds, and in other practices that doctors may need assistance in. Nowadays, nurses have skills and knowledge in various spheres including management, family, community, psychological, surgical, women health, emergency, clinical and advanced practice. The major duties of a nurse include:

Documentation of patients symptoms and medical history;
Management of treatments and medications as directed by doctors;
Keeping a good observation to the patient and record any changes;
Assisting health practitioners;
Developing care plans for patients;
Monitoring and ;
Enhancing health awareness of all the members of community;
Clerical works in diagnostic tests and analysis of results.
Currently, the United State has 3.1 million Licensed Registered Nurses (RNs). Out of these, there are 2. in nursing, and 62.2% of the registered nurses are working in hospitals (, 2011). In addition, nurses in United States are estimated to have a mean hourly wage of $33.13 and a of $68.910 (Bureau of Labour Statistics, 2014). All in all, nursing profession is currently leading in terms of workforce, and it is among the best paying jobs in the US (Petersons, 2009).

The introduction of advanced technology has also led to many changes in the nursing (Huston, 2013). Technology has made nursing easier to administer, thought it has become more difficult to generate results due to intensive research work and data analysis required. This calls for nurses to remain at the cutting edge of technological progress (Glynn-Jones, 2013). The explosion of knowledge in recent years has sparked interest in many young people who would like to take advantage of potential opportunities. Colleges also offer updated training services to aspiring nurses. Most of employers are seeking competent nurses who are ready to move at the same pace with technological advancements, especially when it comes to specialization. Indeed, the emergence of terminal illnesses in recent years such as diabetes and cancer has put nurses on their toes to ensure they have enough knowledge and skills in order to provide the best and quality care to their patients. It is, therefore, evident that nursing practice has changed a lot in the past century, with the changes being more advanced, efficient and effective than they used to be 100 years ago.

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