Advancing the Nursing Profession

“When you’re a nurse you know that every day you will touch a life or a life will touch yours”.  This is a famous saying from an unknown source that has touched my inner soul as I perform my nursing duties to my patients.

For many years, the advancement in the field of science, medicine, technology and research has lessened hospital stay, reduced medical cost and improved the lives of people.  Professionals in various fields of medicine continue to explore the human body in their attempt to prevent sickness and diseases, discover cures, reduce the number of death and injuries and alleviate pains.

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The remarkable discoveries have given rise to better medicines, sophisticated medical apparatus and equipments that contributed to a large extent towards early detection and non-invasive surgical procedures.  So much of these discoveries are made and the advancement in medicine will never cease.
In the field of nursing, I have witnessed the role of technology and medicine towards the improvement of quality of life of many patients.  Some patients may thank the wonders of miracle drugs and others are thankful for the new lease of life that technology has given them.
Yet, there are still countless of patients who need a human touch and listening professionals to reduce their anxieties and to regularly visit them in their sickbed.  Such is a vital role of a nurse that I intend to explore as I work towards the advancement of my profession.
As a student nurse, I was given the opportunity to be assigned in all the units in the hospital.  I directly work under the supervision of a clinical instructor and professional nurses in various units.  In many instances, I also had the chance to assist physicians and surgeons as they perform medical treatments and surgical procedures to their patients.  Every learning opportunity is an important experience for me.
 As I approach my final year in my studies, I cannot help but think of the field that I want to specialize in and how I intend to advance my nursing profession.  My trainings have allowed me to work under a lot of pressure in the emergency department where every second counts to save the lives and alleviate the sufferings of those who are in distress.
I have been part of the team that has witnessed the birth of a new creation in the delivery room.  From orthopedic, aesthetic, cardiology to neurology related surgeries, I have assisted doctors and nurses in the pre-operative and post-operative procedures.
It was challenging to be assigned in the nursery and pediatric department to monitor the health conditions of the infants and children who were prone to many illnesses due to their low resistance.  I have felt the joy of seeing a patient wake up after days of being in a coma in the intensive units.
I have also witnessed miracles and many sufferings from patients in the oncology unit.  There are intrinsic rewards and challenges that nurses like me has experienced in our day-to-day practice.
As one of the forefronts in promoting the quality of life from birth to the end of life of every person, nurses can do so much in touching the lives of people and in giving hope to those who refused to believe that there may still be a faint of light at the end of the tunnel.  This is the task that I have decided to explore in the advancement of my nursing profession.
In my trainings and experience in the hospital, I have had a mixture of good and painful experiences.  Although these are expected in any medical related profession, I still feel that nurses make a difference in the lives of others.  We can affect our patients positively and make them hold on even to the blink of hope that can change their lives.
I felt a strong calling to work on a nursing profession that specialized in the field of oncology when I was assigned in the oncology unit.    Although there are researches, good drugs and advanced therapy for the detection, intervention, and treatment of cancer, nothing could replace the support, human touch and care that nurses could extend to patients who are in need of an assurance that we would be with them and their families as they endure their treatments and pains.
Nothing could equal the anxiety and stress of going through chemo or cobalt therapy knowing that the treatment could provide a long term positive effect, a short-term remission or unfavorable result although these days treatments tend to prolong and enhance lives.  Research has provided us with more hope and more people who are afflicted with cancer tend to resume normal lives after regular treatments.
Although my professional nursing practice may begin after I secure my credentials, I always believe that I have already began to practice my calling on the first day of my clinical experience.  Nursing is the career that I have chosen not only because of my desire to help the sick and make them feel better but I have felt so much fulfillment as I touch their lives in many ways that I have been touched.
Working either in the oncology unit or in the hospice care is a field that I am most drawn to.  I intend to learn as much as I can from my work and from the experience that I will gain from caring my patients.  My concept in advancing nursing comes not from doing research to cure diseases but from the golden rule, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you”.
I lived by the Bible verse found in 1 Thessalonians 5:14, that reminds me to “Encourage those who are weak and afraid”.  I believe that this is a good reminder for all the nurses.  It is not enough that we extend physical care to our patients.
We also need to spiritually and emotionally lift them up to help them cope with their illnesses and to have a positive outlook in life.  Let us not lose sight of what our profession is all about.  Just like those days when Florence Nightingale rendered her dedicated services, we should always offer a lending hand instead of waiting for our patients to ask for them.

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