The image of a nurse has changed during the last few decades. The reforms adopted since 1993 resulted in significant shifts in the perception of a nurse profession. Today, nursing is viewed as a new branch of industry where healthcare centers are enterprises, while nurses are managers and employees who provide services. They go to work perceiving their patients as business units, but not as people who need medical and psychological help. Many nurses today are dissatisfied with the current state of their obligations and search for positive aspects in the corporate environment where they are missing.
An attempt to make medical service more effective and professional led to negative consequences that greatly influenced the nurse’s profession. The role of a nurse has always been as a healer who treats not only a body but also a spirit of patients. According to Asian medicine, health problems are the result of an imbalance between mind and body. The role of a medical worker is to restore such balance. Hence, the only body is not enough to make a person healthy. For centuries, the same principle was applied in western traditional medicine and used by nurses as the main direction of their work. The role of a nurse was regarded not only from a scientific point of view. It was a balanced combination of practical knowledge in medicine and the ability to find an approach to every patient in order to relieve his/her pain.
Nursing as a Science
The nurse profession consists of two parts: the first implements science aspect, while the other deals with the aspect of art. The science aspect of nursing predetermines that nurses should have professional skills and knowledge to provide qualitative service to patients. They should know about the mechanisms of different diseases, how they work and what is necessary to do to prevent the negative consequences after the durable treatment. The role of a nurse as a scientist is to be a professional in biology, chemistry and health care treatment. The majority of people believe that such aspect of a nurse profession should prevail over all other aspects because it predetermines the effectiveness of treatment. For instance, if a nurse does not have qualitative knowledge or appropriate skills, a patient may receive the wrong pills or will be treated in a manner that will only make his/her health state worse. According to such fact, the scientific aspect of nursing is an important part of a nurse profession because the quality of treatment is in direct proportion to the nurse’s knowledge.
Nursing as an Art
Taking into consideration the fact that nursing as science plays a crucial role, one may argue the importance of another aspect of the profession, such as nursing as an art. Indeed, the professionalism of nurses predetermines whether a patient receives a healthcare service according to his/her health condition. Hence, for good nurses, it is enough to have professional knowledge and skills in the medical sphere, but to be the best nurses, they should be able to understand all patients’ visible and non-visible demands and take certain measures to improve their health states. In other words, nursing as an art predetermines a very slight connection between a patient and a nurse. Art is a manner of providing medical treatment to a patient the way a nurse behaves towards a patient. For instance, making diagnose is a science, while establishing communication with a patient is an art. The point is that relations between a patient and a nurse are as important as the qualitative knowledge in medicine. Sometimes, nurses face a problem when a patient requires more mental than physical help. For instance, patients with cancer experiencing bad times requires additional moral support even more than physical treatment. To ensure a patient to continue to fight against cancer is what makes nursing an art. A nurse should be able to listen to a patient, to give good advice, to support him/her morally and be a person whom a patient may trust. As one can see, the current aspect is also very important in the nurse profession because patients are people who require special service and support. Hence, making nursing a business means to treat patients as business units but not human beings who require care and attention at the same high level as the medical treatment.
Nursing as an Art and Science
Taking into consideration the importance of science and art in a nurse profession, it is necessary to say that both aspects are equally important for the profession. The prevailing of one aspect and ignoring another one means the imbalance in providing qualitative service to a patient. Today, one may see that an art aspect loses its importance, making the science more privilege for nursing. However, patients are probably the best critics in such a dilemma because they are the ones who are able to estimate the shifts in nursing and how it reflects on the medical service. Working with people is a difficult job which requires much talent and experience. The balanced usage of both aspects will significantly improve the general healthcare service. Hence, the developing of only one aspect will mean the degradation of another. As a result, a patient will receive either poor medical treatment or lack of attention and communication. In both cases, it has negative effects on a patient’s well-being.
As a conclusion, it can be said that nursing, as well as any other profession, requires a talent, which might be called an art. Some people have such talent in the very beginning of their career as a nurse, while others should work to develop appropriate qualities. Anyway, the presence of art in nursing makes providing medical service to patients more effective and successful. The problem of modern medicine is the attitude to patients and viewing them as biological mechanisms. Such point means that nurses treat patients the same way engineers treat their machines. If an engineer has a problem, he/she tries to fix it and searches for a broken detail; in order to replace it to make the machine works properly again. The applying of the same principle in medical care sphere is often called a scientific method because nurses concentrate their attention solely on the fixing of health problems. If a person has a headache, aspirin will relieve the pain. Indeed, in such situation, the mechanical principle is useful and applicable. However, there are more complex situations when a patient requires non-medical help even more than treatment. In such a case, nursing as art becomes a necessity in the healthcare sphere.
Hence, art and science in nursing are two essential parts of the profession. They are the irreplaceable elements of effective nursing. According to such fact, they should be studied at the same high level in order to provide qualitative service. The declining of one element means the general worsening of the whole medical service. Thus, nursing is a balanced combination of art and science, which is reflected in a nurse profession.