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Pioneer Nursing: Nursing Today, Essay Example

Pages: 2

Words: 596

Essay

Internationally, when reflecting on pioneer nursing reference has always been made to the ‘Lady with the Lamp. It would appear from a British standpoint there would have been no nursing practice and theory without the sterling contributions made by Florence Nightingale at a time when soldiers were fighting in world wars one and two.

It was a time when syphilis had made its appearance in pandemic proportions around the world that she answered the call of serving her country by taking care of sick soldiers and those who needed to be nursed either at home, in hospitals or the battle field.

However, even though she is considered a pioneer, many others have planted their footprints to make nursing the esteemed science it is today. These include Clara Barton founder of the American Red Cross (1821-1912); Mary Breckinridge (1881-1965) founder of the Frontier Nursing service which linked midwifery and infant health care in rural areas (Crisp & Taylor, 2009)

Dorothea Dix (1802-1807) made a great impact on health care as it relates improved nursing care for the mentally ill. Lystra Gretter (1858-1951) impacted nursing education internationally to remove the stigma of the science being an apprentice occupation like welding and carpentry; towards three year academic engagement. Besides, she wrote the very first textbook for nurses and organized professionals into an association requiring representation (Crisp & Taylor, 2009)

Florence Wald (1917-2008) pioneered improvements regarding a theoretical approach towards caring for the dying; managing symptoms and holistic care for family members as well. Many of the community nursing ideologies and hospice dimensions of care were initiated by her (Crisp & Taylor, 2009)

Apart from these renowned women who have pioneered the profession into a science and respectable disciple, there have been  groups such as the sisters of mercy whose contribution to the historical development of caring cannot be overlooked . They were French nuns who took responsibility for sick people in the world. Today it can be said that nursing philosophy emerged from the ‘sisters of mercy’ perspective of caring. Their work began as early as the late seventeenth century even before Florence Nightingale evolved on the scene (Crisp & Taylor, 2009)

Further, research has shown that history may have overlooked the contribution made by Germany’s Frederike Fliedner (1800-42). It has been reported that her ground breaking work saw the formation of the Educational Institution for Evangelical Nurses. Similar groups emerged in Russia as well, but due to the political isolation during that era much has not been recorded regarding their contribution to the science (Crisp & Taylor, 2009)

Nursing today is no longer confined to a general practice. It is a distinct science in itself. Educators are moving away from traditional teaching methods and now employing stimulators in Advance Cardiac Life Support classrooms. There is now an Institute for future nursing (Craven & Hirnle, 2009).

The science has been informed by continuous research to provide evidence for implementation of practices on clinical areas and during emergencies. While theories initiated by educations who studied real life cases in hospitals and nursing homes may be valuable; evidence based practice today is comparable to any other discipline within the health sciences profession. Immense development is occurring when evidence base practices throughout the levels of health care is identified. The levels are primary, secondary and tertiary. Thanks to these pioneers; those who have been fully acknowledged and those who history deliberately omitted.

Works cited

Craven, R F., & Hirnle, C J. Fundamentals of nursing: Human health and  function (6th ed). 2009. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Print

Crisp & Taylor. Fundamentals of Nursing, Milestones in Nursing History: 2009 Elsevier, Australia. Print

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