History of Community Health Nursing Essay

1474 Words May 15th, 2011 6 Pages
History of Community Nursing Matrix As long as people have existed, they needed to look after their health. As a result, the healthcare industry was born. Nurses were a vital part of that growing community. This paper will approach three different historical periods in the United States, discuss the nurse’s role in the community in regards to the major health issues of that period, how they partnered with the community to create new programs and finish with an intellectual discussion on how Jean Watson’s theory of Caring can be applied to the nurse’s role for each historical period. Period 1-- 1800s: In the early year of American settlement , female head of the family provided the care for sick in the family (Stanhope, …show more content…
Nightingale’s idea of becoming a trained nurse became popular across the United States (Stanhope, Lancaster, 2008). During 1870s, the first nursing school based on Nightingale model opened in the United States (Stanhope, Lancaster, 2008). Trained nurses in the United States started to work in private duty nursing or held the few positions in the hospital administrators or instructors (Stanhope, Lancaster, 2008). These private duty nurses only care for wealthy people and home-visiting nurses care for sick poor (Stanhope, Lancaster, 2008). The nurse’s role in this period was to provide preventive education of communicable diseases which will decrease illness (Stanhope, Lancaster, 2008). The visiting nurse did prevention campaigning through the home visit and well-baby clinics (Stanhope, Lancaster, 2008). They worked with physicians and provided selected treatment, kept records of vital signs (Stanhope, Lancaster, 2008). They also educated family members how to care for the sick member and in personal and environmental prevention measures, such as good nutrition, hygiene (Stanhope, Lancaster, 2008). In 1800s, industrial revolution helped to spread of diseases. The major health care issues during this period were epidemics of smallpox, yellow fever, cholera, typhoid, typhus, tuberculosis, infant mortality, and inadequate housing and sanitation (Stanhope, Lancaster, 2008). The public health nurses or visiting nurses were partnership with different