Perceptions of Nursing and Midwifery

Transforming Perceptions of Nursing & Midwifery by Daniel Gooding

I find the title of this brilliant campaign exhilarating, but I like being able to reflect on what it means to me. Why am I a part of it?

The truth is, I battled between what I wanted to do. Medicine, nursing & paramedic. And at times, I do question my decision. Although, I never doubt. I find that by questioning my decisions allows me to see clarity, but I try not to doubt them. So, why did I pick nursing? Why did I choose child nursing?

Why Nursing?

With nursing, I have seemingly endless opportunity to do further training, I can work in a range of settings; hospital, GP practices, clinics, community, both within the United Kingdom and abroad. Being a nurse is different to medicine and paramedics as we have outstanding career mobility, that is the ability to swap specialities without going back to day one in my training. There are also the practical things like (theoretically) working 3 – 4 shifts a week and job security – as nurses will always be needed.

And why child nursing?

Part of me believes there is more to learn. I also feel that children’s’ nurses have more autonomy. There is more to children’s’ nursing, that meets the eye. Children are not small adults. Their needs are very different and when it comes to the care, it is not just the child but the entire family. I think Ewout sums it up brilliantly in his Health Careers piece where he says “To be able to go into that situation and be able to help calm the child down and assure the parent that everything was ok was incredible.

So, what does Transforming Perceptions of Nursing & Midwifery mean to me?

I think the bigger question is why do I feel so passionate . about changing/transforming perceptions of Nursing? I believe changing the perception of nursing is integral for the growth of our profession both in numbers and in stature. Now, nursing is a growing profession. At present, nursing is a degree level profession. I recently explained in a blog why I feel like that.

Evidence based practice

Essentially, as nurses, we must use an evidence base in order to be the safest and most effective practitioners that we can. The Nursing & Midwifery Code (2015) state that we as nurses must “assess need and deliver or advise on treatment, or give help (including preventative or rehabilitative care) without too much delay and to the best of your abilities, on the basis of the best evidence available and best practice.”

This is a genuine question, and please do let me know if there is an answer, but how many professions use an evidence base practice without the degree backing. Although that does not make any difference.

Degree nurses

The bottom line is that that a large-scale 2014 study found that every 10% increase in bachelor’s degree nurses was associated with a decrease in mortality by at least 7%. This is not me saying that those without a degree do not make good nurses, but I believe in order to give safe and effective care, the nurses of the future would be better equip to provide the care that our growing population/diminishing healthcare system needs, as degree nurses.

What needs to change?

I believe that the best way to change the perceptions of nursing is to make large scale changes to how nurses are perceived using the media – mainly through television. This is because most portrayals of nurses through television do not show a true to life view of the nurses roll at present. By aiming for changes on television, I think the most amount of people would see it at once.

I also believe that going into schools at various age groups would do great things for the profession. By talking with children at infant, junior and secondary school, we will be able to talk at children through all ages. By talking with these children, we could change the perception of nurses for future generations, and potentially, increase it as a career option for children of all ages.

I want nursing to be openly recognised as the highly skilled profession that it is. I believe nurses should be recognised to their fullest extend, for at the minute, nurses are undervalued and underappreciated. I believe that the growth nursing is experiencing is a great thing.

Yours in nursing,

DCLG 

What inspired you to write this blog?

The Transforming Perceptions of Nursing and Midwifery 30 Day Challenge

What is your role?

Third Year CYP Nursing Student -  Leader - Nursing Activist - RCN SIO of the Year 2018

 

What are your nursing and/or midwifery qualifications?

Third Year CYP Nursing Student

 

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