The field of Nursing is one that is constantly growing and developing. Nursing comprises the largest segment of the healthcare professional workforce. “By 2022, there will be far more registered nurse jobs available than any other profession, at more than 100,000 per year” (ANA, 2018). More than 500,000 employed nurses are expected to retire by 2022 (ANA, 2018). The increased growth of nursing is contributed to the longer life expectancies of people. Now, in this technology driven era, we have made so many advances allowing patients to live longer. People living longer means they will require more medical attention over the years, increasing the need for nurses. The baby boomer generation is starting to grow elderly as well, contributing to the increase in the number of nurses needed to treat and care for them. Needless to say, you will always have a job as a nurse.
Growing up, I always pictured myself working in the health field, and while there are many careers that help people, nursing is a career where you can truly connect with your patient and really feel like you are making a difference. In becoming a nurse, I will have the opportunity to make a difference in one’s life. I have the chance to impact my patient and that could include their family as well. When a patient is sick, it is a very vulnerable and unpleasant time for them. They may be angry with themselves, with the world, and may even take it out on the nurse at times. Some people may take that personal, but as a nurse you have to always remember to look at the situation from the patient’s point of view; what they are experiencing and going through. It would be my job to care and be there for them; to be their shoulder to cry on or listen to. Some patient’s may not have that family support or have anyone to talk to about their situation.
As a nurse, I would be the middle informant between the doctor and patient. Sometimes when doctors come in to the hospital room and explain a certain procedure to a patient, the patient may still not understand it. They may be afraid to ask questions because they don’t want to seem intellectually inferior. They may be in so much shock that they may not be able to process all the information the doctor is giving them or know what questions to ask at the time. As a nurse, you have been caring for the patient and developing a rapport with them, that they may feel more comfortable expressing their concerns or questions to you. A nurse may be a little better in explaining and simplifying the steps of a procedure to the patient.
Florence Nightingale is known as the founder of Nursing. She refers to nursing as a form of art as well as the mind, body, and spirit as one. The person, their health, and the environment must all be in compliance. The method nightingale used is referred to as a holistic view of nursing and is what we use today. “Health practices are culturally determined and include nutritional habits, type and amount of exercise and rest, how one copes with stress, quality of interpersonal relationships, expression of spirituality, and numerous other lifestyle factors” (Black, 2017 p.161). We want to look at the patient as a whole rather than focus on just the medical problem. She achieved a healthier environment by improving sanitary practices. Improving cleanliness of rooms and having doctors washing their hands in between seeing patients, greatly decreased the mortality rate. (Watson, J. 1998).
My two biggest personality characteristics that I believe would really contribute to the field of nursing is my ability to be empathetic and caring. The qualities you possess as a nurse can make a difference in patient’s life and recovery. Nursing is considered the most trusted profession and it’s important to build that relationship with the patient. I was born and raised on St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands and then later did my undergraduate education in Connecticut. My diverse background, Mother Spanish and Father Indian along with my growing up in a diverse cultural community on the island provided me with an advantage to relating and communicating with people as well as being respectful of our differences. Our population today is widely diverse ethnically, racially, and culturally. It is important for nurses to be aware and to respect other cultures. What is wrong in one culture may be considered right in another culture. It is not our job to judge but to primarily give care to the patient. It is important for nurses to become educated on this topic and to become “culturally sensitive” (Black, 2017 p. 45-46).
Nursing is a challenging profession but nevertheless rewarding when you are able to help someone. It will never always be sunshine’s and rainbows as the reality is that people are sick and some may not get better. This becomes the challenging part of the job. Knowing that the patient you are treating and doing your very best to help may not survive the battle.
There are many other benefits to becoming a nurse that really interested me. My favorite, is that nursing offers multiple career pathways. There are so many different specialties like neonatal, critical care, dialysis, psychiatric, pediatric, oncology and many more. There are also different settings you can work in like a hospital, doctor’s office, nursing home, or clinic. This gives me many options to explore and if the one field I decided to go in no longer interests me, I can choose another. An additional option offered is the chance to become a travel nurse. This allows you to travel and give care to patients at the same time, which is something I’m very interested in. My goal right now is to achieve my Bachelor’s in Nursing but there is also room for advancement. I could decide to get my Masters or even Doctorate’s in nursing, so there is always a ladder to climb up. Nursing is a job that is always in high demand and there will always be plenty of job openings no matter where you go.