Nursing is without a doubt the best career and you should become a nurse. People are always going to be dying which is great for you because you’ll always have a job. There will always be illnesses, a wide variety I may add, that will need tending to. In other words there will always be a demand for nurses. In the words of Metallica it’s sad but true. It’s not all sad though because the job comes with benefits, and not just better access to healthcare insurance. In my essay I will be arguing why you, the reader, should become a nurse. I will try to be convincing by bringing the pros and cons to you. Nurses themselves made this list so you will have a credible inside look of what it’s like to be nurse. The pros are earning potential, unlimited job opportunities, high demand for decades to come and purpose. The cons are it’s difficult, demanding, common bullying in workplace and possible legal consequences for mistakes.
What is nursing? When did it start?
According to google nursing is a profession within the healthcare sector focused on the care of individuals, families and communities so they may attain, maintain or recover optimal health and quality of life. In other words nurses save and improve lives. Nursing in essence has been around since the beginning of time since people have been burdened with illness and death since well, the beginning of time (if it weren’t for that bitch Eve though). Around the 1500’s nursing was largely based on religion, with the vast majority of available nurses consisting of nuns and even monks. At first Hospitals were attached to Cathedrals and monasteries in Europe. It is said that the roots of modern nursing began to take shape in the 18th and 19th centuries during these years, Britain and North America we’re at the forefront of Innovation within the industry. In the early 1900s Florence Nightingale helped to change the nature of the profession forever. At this time nursing was becoming more important than ever due to the many wars being waged. While Florence Nightingale is one of the most popular nurses in history, there were many other women who worked tirelessly to provide high quality health care to anyone that needed it, providing the model for nursing that still exists today (nursingschoolhub.com).
Nursing is invaluable without it more people would have died in World Wars and Civil Wars. Without it our nation’s growth, including others, would have been hindered. And without these advances we could still be dying from something as simple as diarrhea or smallpox. Sure someone might say nurses are just sidekicks to medical science and doctors. But who is Captain Kirk without Spock? Or Han Solo without Chewbacca? And we all know without Dr. Watsons help, Sherlock Holmes would just be a drug addict locked away while he loses his mind. Nurses are the unseen heroes that play essential parts in saving lives.
Money and Unlimited Job Opportunities
The median yearly pay for a registered nurse in 2018 was 71,730. You can be someones sugar daddy with money like that, or you can stay ethical like your career and take care of yourself and your loved ones. The first reason why you should become a nurse is because of the earning potential. If you get an associates degree in nursing you can become a licensed practitioner nurse (LPN) and they make around $44,000 a year. To receive a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing (BSN) and become a registered nurse (RN) it takes about four years to complete and you can make around $71,000 per year. If you’d like to make over $100,000 a year you can become an advanced practice nurse (AP) by holding a master’s degree in a particular focused area. You can even work your way up into Administration and not be on your feet all day. There are also a variety a specific patient groups. Meaning you can work in a hospital environment (Critical Care Nurses) take care of newborn babies (Neonatology) working just a simple doctor’s office administering things like immunizations ( Public Health Nurses) (Bureau of Labor Statistics). From working with pregnant women from old people to addicted people these are positions that are in demand and need to be filled. And these are only a few job opportunities mentioned.
But it’s Difficult and Demanding
You will see sad situations. There will be times in your nursing career where you witness sad or tragic situations. Patients do not all make it, and watching someone die can be tough (Gapmedics). But “if you’re able to catch a change in patient condition, you essentially save their life” (Rasmussen). Death is inevitable and at some point in your personal life you will probably experience this regardless of your career choice. Understanding that you risk witnessing sad or tragic situations in order to help or save, even just one life, is part of the job. This sad but true reality defines the value of your work and skills that is very rare in any other field. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. And the gain of helping or saving a persons life is beyond comparison. But still, nursing can be demanding on your own life. It is a high-stress career. The job requires constant attention to details, serving others and sometimes hustling for hours without much downtime. Nurses themselves said the stress can be debilitating (Rasmussen). Knowing your limits, being assertive and getting therapy and a massage (and even a boat) with that $71,000 can help reduce stress. Due to the unlimited job opportunities you can also transfer to a less stressful genre of nursing like public Health in a doctor’s office. The taxing 12-hour shifts can be both a pro and a con. It can be strenuous but also a big plus because you would have more time off. This is not the only option though, you can work 10 hour shifts for 4 days or the typical 5-day work week depending on the specific patient group you choose.
Nursing is a profession that will be in high demand for decades to come. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the economic job growth is not as bad as we think and that it is expected to grow 6% from 2016 to 2026, about as fast as average for all occupations. Nursing on the other hand is expected to grow much faster at 15%. Growth will occur for a number of reasons. Demand for healthcare services will increase because of the aging population, given that older people typically have more medical problems than younger people. Overall, job opportunities for registered nurses are expected to be good because of employment growth and the need to replace workers who retire over the coming decade (Bureau of Labor Statistics). A con to this pro is that the supply of new nurses entering the labor market has increased therefore competition for jobs has also increased in some areas of the country. A solution to this is earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in nursing since those with a BSN have better job prospects than those without one (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Nursing is a caring and compassionate profession where bullying is a problem. A bully in nursing is a person who habitually intimidates or harms nurses he or she believes to be vulnerable and possibly incompetent. Numerous Studies have documented a prevalence (range 17% to 85%) of bullying in nursing. The type of bullying behavior that was reported was repeatedly controlling, belittling, unjustifiably criticizing, oppressing, ignoring, threatening, verbally abusing, assigning too heavy workloads, undervaluing, or under appreciating the efforts of the nurse or group of nurses being bullied (Meires J). There are things you can do to prevent bullying from happening though. Bullies don’t always know that they are perceived as difficult and believe their behavior is justified so a simple acknowledgement that there is a problem and a solution are all that are needed to stop the bullying (Meires J). Just be confident and confront the bully respectfully. Another way to avoid being bullied is to have emotional intelligence, meaning monitoring your own feelings and the feelings of others and using good judgment to not overreact like the bully. You can also have a practical approach. One approach to bullying is to reflect on the situation before acting, and then you can talk to them directly after the incident or during a break. If all else fails there is an institution policy on bullying/incivility and there are specific actions you can take if or when encountering a colleague who is a bully (Meires J).
Helping and saving lives is the purpose of a nurse. What could be more rewarding than that? Some might argue this is the greatest purpose. But what is the purpose of saving lives? Maybe this is a question only a psychopath would ask but it’s one that I found myself asking. The answer I found was value. Human life holds value although I’m sure what that value is, because, I’m not you. I’m me. Every individual’s job is to find their value and to do so they have to find who they are first and once that’s done they find their purpose. For example a Christian person might believe they are a child of God and so they’ve found their purpose. What is the cancer patient or the recovering addict’s purpose? Coping? Nursing focuses on the care of individuals so that they may attain, maintain or recover optimal health and in turn help the patient get back to or find their purpose. I don’t think this is something that nurses are aware of. Or maybe they are and they’re just really humble. The last reason why you should become a nurse is because you would not only be helping people live physically but to live actually, to the potential of their value. Which a nurse might say is invaluable.
Possible Legal Consequences
Since nurses deal with illnesses, sometimes life-threatening, consequences of mistakes are greater. One could say don’t make mistakes then but, Nurses work with sophisticated equipment, and every now and then the equipment fails. If you don’t report malfunctions immediately, or if you use the equipment improperly, you could be held responsible in certain circumstances (Brouillet and Calfeee). A more common scenario are the critical situations that nurses have to monitor. Nurses monitor up to eight patients and if more than one of them is in critical condition you could be held liable if you miss significant changes on a monitor. Keeping a journal only to protect yourself in unusual circumstances, following procedures and being Direct with your manager about your concerns or need for help are a few ways to avoid possible legal consequences (Brouillet and Calfee). There are also areas of nursing that administer immunizations and checkups that don’t deal with life or death situations where possible legal consequences for mistakes are highly unlikely.
As a nurse you can confidently say the work you do benefits the world. I think all jobs benefit the world, no matter how insignificant they may feel, but nursing deals with the most terrible and beautiful aspects in said world; life and death. Even if you become a nurse in a doctor’s office, doing checkups on patients, you are monitoring their optimal health so they can live their purpose. Nursing pays great and you’re more than likely to get the job, and flexibility within that job; ranging from work environment to hours. Despite the cons of the job being demanding, difficult, dealing with possible bullying and legal consequences, you can live your life outside of work knowing that what you do has been and will continue to be vital for human existence and progression. Without nursing we’d probably still be dying from Flu. And for those who are still dying from diseases and illnesses, nursing helps these patients to live their purpose beyond coping. There is no greater purpose than helping people live this life to their potential. As a nurse you will not only be helping people survive life but to live it. Also, nurses have the stereotype of being hot.
Brouillet, Richard A., and Barbara E. Calfee. “Weighing the Pros and Cons.” Nursing, vol. 25, no. 5, May 1995, p. 30. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=9505210803&site=ehost-live. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Registered Nurses, on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/registered-nurses.htm (visited July 30, 2019). Meires, Jan. “Workplace Incivility. The Essentials: Here’s What You Need to Know about Bullying In Nursing.” Urologic Nursing, vol. 38, no. 2, Mar. 2018, pp. 95–98. EBSCOhost, doi:10.7257/1053-816X.2018.38.2.95. https://www.nursingschoolhub.com/history-nursing/ http://www.gapmedics.com/blog/2014/12/19/10-must-know-pros-and-cons-of-becoming-a-nurse/ http://www.rasmussen.edu/degrees/nursing/blog/pros-and-cons-of-being-nurse/