Nurses are such an essential part of any society that is even barely functioning that we all know what they are, and we have all encountered them at some point or other. Being familiar with nurses and nursing, however, is not quite the same thing as actually knowing about it. Moreover, because nursing is such a familiar role (or, perhaps, despite that fact) there are actually plenty of misconceptions about nurses and nursing that remain common.
It doesn’t take much to dispel these misconceptions, of course. Anyone who has been through the training and studies to become a registered nurse will say that these go out the window pretty quickly. Health Jobs, a healthcare recruitment service helping candidates find nurse practitioner jobs, say that by the time you get to this part of the path to becoming a nurse, many of these misconceptions have already been thoroughly dispelled. There are some thoughts that only really become apparent (or rather not apparent) when you actually start working as a registered nurse in a hospital or some other healthcare institution.
Appreciating Nursing in its Own Right
There is one big misconception about nursing that perhaps requires some sort of special attention. This is the idea that nurses are somehow healthcare assistants or people who fulfill a role that is essentially auxiliary in nature. This is not at all true. Nurses are not doctors assistants, nor are they merely there for hospital “manpower”. Nursing is, in fact, a unique role with unique expertise and requiring a unique course of education. Nurses, of course, do work with physicians, but they are not somehow junior partners in the endeavor. The correct way to think about it is as two distinct professionals cooperating.
If this view of nursing were adopted more widely, there would almost certainly be more appreciation for the role, both among those inspired to pursue it and the rest of us who are likely to rely on it at several points in our lives.
The Most Prevalent Myths About Nursing
So, with a mind to dispelling some of the ignorance about nursing, here are three of the most common myths that really need to be dispelled:
Myth 1 – All Nurses Are Woman
Or that there is something intrinsically feminine about the role. This is a complicated matter, as it does seem that women disproportionately go into nursing. Nonetheless, the idea that men are somehow ill-suited is not true, and this is proven simply by the number of male nurses that there are.
Myth 2 – Nurses Want to Be Doctors
This is perhaps an offshoot of the misconception that nurses are doctor’s assistants. It is simply not true that those who study nursing do so because they don’t have the grades or money to get into med school. Again, nursing is a different discipline, and it therefore attracts different people. Of course, there is some overlap in the personality types of people who become nurses and doctors, but they are distinct professions, and most nurses never had any other ambition than to be a nurse.
Myth 3 – Nursing is Just One Job
No! All nursing positions share something in common, but the diversity is such that you actually need different education paths to occupy different nursing roles. Becoming a registered nurse is usually just a precursor to further training and education to attain a specialty. The different nursing roles are remarkably diverse.
Nurses perform such a vital role that there is no doubt they deserve our utmost respect. Actually finding out what a nurse is and does is one way of giving that respect.