Florence Nightingale can be titled the pioneer of the nursing profession. Her theory of the impact of the environment to human health created history and is still used today. Her focus is on making a clean, healthy, calming environment to promote a fast and productive recovery. After Florence Nightingale came up with her theory she based a school of nursing on it. This nursing theory is very important even in today’s healthcare system. In this essay I will describe Florence Nightingales theory and the impact it has on the nursing profession.
In the 1800’s, during the Crimean War, there was little health care for the sick and injured soldiers. That is until Florence Nightingale came into the picture. In 1854, Florence Nightingale trained 38 women to become nurses and they set off to care for injured soldiers. During the time when Nightingale was at the dirty, unsanitary infirmary she noticed that the death rate of men continued to climb, no matter what the nurses did. According to Harkreader, Hogan, and Thobaben, “She (Nightingale) gathered statistics on the death rate in the hospital before and after nursing intervened” (p. 78). “She was our first theorist, recognizing the importance of the environment and basing he theory on it” (Harkreader, Hogan, and Thobaben, 2007, p78). That is about the time when she noticed that the men were being subject to poor environments and poor nutrition. This is when Florence Nightingale began to make a significant difference in healthcare.
Florence Nightingale is the founder of nursing as we know it. She developed the first nursing theory that says there is a direct correlation between the environment and the health and wellbeing of a sick individual. Her definition of nursing was unlike anyone else. According to Nightingale (1860), “ (Nursing) It ought to signify the proper use of fresh air, light, warmth, cleanliness, and the proper selection and administration of diet-all at the least expense of vital power...
References: Harkreader, H, Hogan, M, & Thobaben, M (2007). A framework for nursing practice: Historical practice. St. Louis: Saunders.
Nightingale, Florence (1860). Note on Nursing: What it is and What it is not. London, England: Harrison, 59, PallMall.
Shaner-McRae, H, McRae, G, & Jas, V Environmentally Safe Health Care Agencies. : Nursing’s Responsibility, Nightingale’s Legacy, 12, Retrieved June 26, 2008, from http://nursingworld.org/MainMenuCategories/ANAMarketplace/ANAPeriodicals/OJIN/TableofContents/Volume122007/May31/EnvironmentallySafeHealthCareAgencies.aspx.
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