By Mir Uzma Ashraf
The nursing profession might be the most trusted one, according to surveys and polls, but it is certainly not the most respected by a long shot. My personal experience validates this point: I was at my workplace earlier this month when many students of B.sc Nursing I year came to me and told me about a volatile situation that was unfolding between other nursing students and staff members of other departments. One of the staff members of other department was in the bus and acted like a loud mouthed fool behaving disrespectfully towards nursing students. I clearly recall another instance of blatant disrespect at the same workplace where a group of staff members (other than nursing professionals) were yelling obscenities and threats at the nursing students: “Are u a nurse? You know what you have to do after degree completion-give injections and following doctors only. You should better go to another profession .”
These same instances of disrespect would be totally unacceptable at other places.
According to Polls, nursing is the most trusted profession. For the 12th year, nurses were voted the most trusted profession in America in Gallup’s Annual Survey that ranks professions based on their honesty and ethical standards (American Nurses Association 2012). However, trust must not be confused with respect. While nurses are certainly trusted, we are not respected by the public.
I want to convey that no course is simple. Every educational line has its share of ups and downs (some prioritized while others may seem to come as added weight). Nonetheless, every subject or discipline has equal scope and potential. However, there are some courses that requires intense efforts and hard work than others and I am proudly stating that the nursing profession is one of them. The Bachelors of Science in Nursing (B.sc Nsg) has been held to be the toughest degree among all the undergraduate college degrees by the Guinness Book Of World Records on 18th May 2011. It has 64 University exams, 130 Series exams, 174 Assignments within 4 years (Max 1000 working days).
In the final analysis, the following quote is what defines nursing and a nurse:
“To go above and beyond the call of duty. The first to work and last to leave. The heart and soul of caring. A unique soul who will pass through your life for a minute and impact it for an eternity. An empowered individual whom you may meet for only a 12 hour period, but who will put you and yours above theirs.”
—The author is a lecturer at the Institute Of Nursing And Paramedical Sciences, University Of Kashmir, South Campus Anantnag, Kashmir and can be reached at: [email protected]