Professional Nursing Roles
Nursing is among the most critical professionals across the globe that is essential for the survival of humanity. The role of nurses is mainly to improve the health of their clients. However, to achieve that objective, a diverse and complex approach of health is employed. This is because health issues have become very complex and the nursing professionals is also changing with time. Presently, the changes in the society have made new challenges to arise, hence making it complex for nurses to achieve their professional goals. In the society, different people have different perception of nurses. Nonetheless, nurses are guided by professional ethics in their practices, however; it is imperative to acknowledge that nurses are ordinary human being who have gone through training and thus have been licensed to perform their professional roles. This research paper focuses on nurses as care providers, learners, managers, and the general perception of nurses by the public.
Being a doctor does not mean a person is perfect. In fact, healthcare workers are just like any other human beings and therefore have a right to choose what to do with their lives rather than being forced into ‘health-gods’. Healthcare workers live in the same environment as other people, enjoy similar foods, and succumb to same illnesses. With all these similarities, healthcare workers wonder where the difference sets in. Healthcare workers would understand that they know health issues better than the other (Parse, 1981). Thus, their principle role is health promotion through the guidance of their professional ethics. They need to listen to inside voice and do as it says; this way, they will act differently from other people. Healthcare workers understand the problems their patients create for themselves because of living unhealthily. The healthcare workers are aware of the problems their patients face as a result of alcohol use, drug abuse, over-eating, and smoking among others. It would not be realistic for healthcare workers to create the same problems they watch patients do.
The role of nurses in the promotion and improving the health of individuals, populations, and families should not be undermined. It is the nurses who play the most critical role in ensuring that the vulnerable members of the society access to health care and thus improve their social well-being along with health. While promoting health, the nurses employ multiple skills and know that every contact counts. In performing their roles, they realize that they have to ensure that they reduce the impact of illness and ensure that a patient performance returns to normal (McHugh, et, al, 2009). Among the key roles that nurses have played is serving as midwives who support women while giving birth. Without this role, many babies and their mothers would die, hence jeopardizing the future of humanity.
Patient education is very important in healthcare for a patient. It can be defined as the provision of both written and verbal information to the patient in order to improve his understanding of the treatment process and thus prevent complications (Falvo, 2011). Patient education thus helps in realizing long-term outcomes that lead to better coping skills. People with clear understanding of their illness recover with ease and do not report repeated setbacks. It is through patient education that the patient knows the role he has to play in his health. A patient has to be educated every time he is treated so that he understands the treatment process and is able to take the medication as prescribed. It is notable that patient education helps in not only influencing the patient to participate in his treatment but also in improving outcomes, identifying errors prior to occurrence, and reducing one’s length of an illness.
As earlier mentioned, patient education should not only be to inform the patient of how to take care of himself and avoid future illnesses. Patient education is also vital in enabling the patient understand the treatment process. A patient will cooperate and be active in the treatment process once the doctor explains to him why similar steps and actions and being taken. This eases the work of healthcare providers since patients understand their role in the treatment process. It is very hard for healthcare providers if the patients are not taking care of themselves as required. Thus, the learning theory employed by nurses is the behavioral theory learning, which is effective in ensuring that patients learn about their health.
Nurse as a Leader and Manager
Leadership is a diverse issue in any profession and nursing is not exceptional. It is dependent on many factors within the organization and outside the organization. In nursing, there are several factors that determine the kind of leadership style to be employed at a particular point of time. Irrespective of the leadership style employed, nurses’ leadership must be guided by laid down professional ethics. The American Nurses Association is responsible for establishment of various provisions that guides the nurses’ code of ethics in their line of duty.
Different situations call for different leadership strategies. There are three leadership strategies that are applicable in the nursing profession; these include paternalistic, authoritarian, and collaborative strategy. Paternalistic leadership requires the leader to play the role of the father to the other junior nurses who are expected to work hard to earn loyalty from their leader. The leader works hard to fight for the rights of the junior nurses and when there is a good relationship between the leader and other junior nurses, the patients benefit by being offered quality services (Marshall, 2011). An advantage of this style is that the juniors can learn from the leader, while its demerit is that is too much interaction between the leader and juniors can result to disrespect among them. Another leadership style is authoritarian leadership whereby the leader has full control over junior nurses through strict supervision and maintains only a professional relationship. This leadership style creates pressure to ensure the correct thing is done, but it can result to rebellion among the nurses against the leader. Rosdahl and Kowalski (2008) notes that democratic leadership style involves all nurses being involves in the decision making process through practicing social equality. Everyone is considered a leader and team work is enabled. The greatest advantage for this style is that it enhances teamwork, however, it can takes time to make decisions due to extensive consultation among the nurses. The nursing delivery model that was most effective for better patient outcomes is the collaborative model.
Teamwork is very important in nursing. The leaders of a team need to ensure that the team members are motivated to work towards achieving a common objective. As the leaders of the team employ collaborative leadership, this must take into consideration the short-term and long-term goals of the team (Grossman, 2013). Members should be empowered by being allowed to take part in the decision making process. A team with an effective leader results to high performance and efficiency in allocation of the limited resources in the health care setting; otherwise, poor team leadership results to failure of the healthcare system.
Perception of Nurse
Within many societies, nurses are considered to be professionals who are most competent with issues pertaining health of individuals. The nurses are expected to be people who work tirelessly to save life and improve the health of patients. In most cases, the patients assume that nurses do not have a personal life, thus, the patient expects the nurses to avail their services whenever they are needed. They demand that nurses are super human beings who are expected to know their problems and address them with perfection. Different people have different perception of nurses in regards to their skills, care, and professionalism. To some extent, the perception is mostly influenced by what the nurses are wearing.
The public or media perception of nurses do not affect me as a nurse. This is because nurses are guided by their professional ethics and should not allow external factors to disrupt them from performing their tasks. The different perception that is exhibited by different people is mainly determined by the professional role expectation and the right to express one self. However, one major factor that determines the perception of nurses by the public is their code of dressing. Nurses who wear their uniform and have limited body parts being visible are considered more competent than those not wearing uniforms.
Nursing is a complex profession that requires vast knowledge in order to overcome the challenges associated with it. It requires one to be highly intelligent in order to be able to address the challenges while at the same time be able to adjust to the changes in the professional. The ability to multitask and consider the nursing ethics is critical elements that nurses should keep in their heart while performing their tasks. The new knowledge acquired during the course revolves around the learning theories and the nursing leadership theories.
Falvo, D. R. (2011). Effective patient education: A guide to increased adherence. Sudbury, Mass: Jones and Bartlett.
Grossman, S. (2013). Mentoring in nursing: A dynamic and collaborative process. New York, NY: Springer Pub. Co.
Marshall, E. S. (2011). Transformational leadership in nursing: From expert clinician to influential leader. New York, NY: Springer.
McHugh GA, et al. (2009). Specialist community nurses: a critical analysis of their role in the management of long-term conditions. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 6(10), pp.2550-2567.
Parse, R. R. (1981). Man-living health: A theory of nursing. New York: Wiley.
Rosdahl, C. B., & Kowalski, M. T. (2008). Textbook of basic nursing. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.