Essay on Nursing as an Occupation

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Nursing as an Occupation
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Nursing has, quite possibly, been one of the most difficult professions to define in the medical field. Clarke (2003) stated that the nurse needs to `articulate' who s/he is and what his/her `value' is in medicine or risks having others define it. As with the profession itself, definitions of nursing are ."..dynamic...constantly evolving to meet new knowledge."(Royal College of Nursing, 2003). Down through the years as the role of the nurse has expanded and diversified, so have the opinions of those who respect and view this career with intrigue. The author believes that nursing is and the functions of the nurse are: the "provision of care", a "commitment to partnership"
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However, in order to carry out care in nursing, as well as having the educated technical skill, the nurse must also have high standards of certain characteristics. Poulin (1987) declared, ."..The professionalism of nursing will be tested by its degree to its caring function." (cited in Lindberg, Hunter and Kruszewski, 1998 p.20). In 1986, Leiniger wrote that the client could become degraded and feels treated as an object by the use of mechanical therapies. She stressed that clients need quality care from humans and that the nurse requires the character traits to carry out this function such as: comfort, compassion, concern, helping behaviour, love, support, touching and trust. (cited in Lindberg, Hunter, Kruszewski, 1998, p.20).

Commitment to partnership is of major importance in nursing. The relationship between the nurse and the client reflects dedication to ensuring the overall well being of the client and, thus, the personal reward for the nurse. This relationship is based on empathy on the nurse's part and trust on the client's part. In 1952, Peplau recognised that this interpersonal relationship develops at the "orientation phase" when one stranger requires care that another stranger can offer. (cited in Baillie, 1995, p.29). In this orientation phase, Morse (1991)
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