Nursing can be thought of as both an art and science which has a heart and a mind. A heart that solely focuses on the care of the patient and its needs and a mind that skillfully performs holistic care to prevent/cure disease and illness thoroughly by taking various measurements and methods. Nursing includes the promotion of healthy life, prevention of disease and illness, curing disease and illness, taking care of the disabled and dying.
The objective of nursing may seem simple at first that is to care for others and treat their illness but after going through rigorous training of both mind and body for more than 4 years in a nursing school, it becomes a blunt truth that it is in fact not easy at all! Nursing is considered as one the most stressful professions in the world and it is renowned for producing workaholics and what not!
Nurses are one of the most trusted group of professionals in the world, according to WHO (World health organization) there are more than 19.3 million nurses in the world, including both male and female nurses. There are about 3 million nurses only in the US, holding the highest number of nurses in a nation. The nurses are a very cooperative bunch of peoples, they collaborates with physicians, therapists, doctors and other healthcare members to bring out the most effective outcome for the patient and patient’s family members.
Unlike other healthcare members, nurses are more patient-centered, they are more personal in terms with the patient. Nursing is a profession which is constantly evolving to address the needs of society, the members of the society and basically all of humanity.
What do the nurses really do?
In a field as diverse as nursing, there is no singular answer. The duty or role of a nurse can range from making critical medical decisions to providing vaccine in schools or even babysitting a child. Nurses play a significant role in varieties of area. They make up one of the biggest health care occupation in the world. While majority of the nurses care for people in clinics and hospitals, there are nurses who work in different areas of nursing. Some of them work in nursing homes, community health center, schools while there are nurses who work in crisis such as camps, shelters and even during military mission.
Some people think that nurses are basically the doctor’s handmaidens but that is not true at all, they work selfless for 24 hours a day whenever a service is needed, they are always there, starting from assessing the patient to mentally comforting them. They have their own care plan for each and every patient, care plans vary from people to people, and not all patients have the same care plan. They plan your care plan around your medical condition, emotional state, ability to do self-care and other necessary criteria. A nurse supports you and your family during your treatment and afterwards. A nurse is the direct link between the patient/patient’s family and the doctor.
Types of nursing careers
The nursing field is as diverse as it can get, there are literally more 100+ types of nurses currently working in the healthcare organizations.
The nurses practice in many specialties; some of the common types of nurses are Registered Nurses (RNs), Nurse Practitioner (NP), Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) and Registered Practical Nurses (RPNs). The number of RNs exceeds more than any types of nurses and their demand is always at peak, they work in collaboration with the Bedside Nurse and interdisciplinary team to support the care of patients.
The key responsibility of RNs is to assist physicians and doctors in clinics and hospital. They perform tasks related to patient care plan, case management and treatment process. It’s no surprise that RNs are always on hot demand because they specialize in several areas.The NP, LPN and RPN works directly under the supervision of a RN or a doctor, they cooperate with their superior healthcare members and among themselves to bring out the most efficient outcome, they diagnose and monitors the patient from time to time, checking vital signs, administering medicine and injections are usually done by them. A great way to start a nursing career is by either becoming a NP or a LPN.
Another types of nurses are the critical unit nurses, they specialize in specific areas. They are also subdivided into different categories such as Medical-surgical nurse, Emergency room nurse, Clinical nurse specialist, Neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) nurse, Pediatric nurse, Cardiovascular nurse etc. They each specialize in different areas but each of them has specific concentration over something. They generally work in different hospitals and clinics.
Another popular type of nurse is the travel nurses. Even among the nurses, travel nurses hold exceptional position and remarkable qualities which allows them to get hired from places to places. Travel nurses are unique in their own; they have more freedom. They are allowed more opportunities to get a more suitable work at any place. They travel a lot! Their workplace is never permanent and they are very dynamic on their own. They work both nationally and internationally.
There are many other types of nurses, the nursing field is immense. There are also administrative level nurses who supervise the other nurses. Some other popular types of nurses are – staff nurse, nurse manager, psychiatric – mental health nurse etc.
The Future of Nursing
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there will be a shortage of about 800,000 nurses by 2020. The average age of the population is rising and there will be a need of more medical care in the near future so hospitals, clinics and medical facilities are always looking for nurses. When you take into consideration that the demand is increasing and the workforce is decreasing, it’s clear that there will be a huge need for nurses in the near future. The job sector is flexible if the person is willing to take on stress and immense workload. The future of nursing looks promising and less competitive.