Fred Hechinger's "They Tortured My Mother, " Suzanne Gordon's "What Nurses Stand for, " George Simpson's "The War Room at Bellevue"

Powerful Essays
Like many systems in the United States of America, the health care system is far from perfect. Through Fred Hechinger’s “They Tortured My Mother,” Suzanne Gordon’s “What Nurses Stand For,” and George Simpson’s “The War Room at Bellevue,” it is clear that the quality of health care varies from hospital to hospital. The system, while in dire need of reconstruction, has some satisfying aspects that often times go unnoticed by the American public. Caring, respectful, and good-natured nurses are the unmentioned backbone of the health care system. Downfalls in the health care system begin with its continuous replacement of trained and experienced nurses with unlicensed assistive personnel, compensation of hospital administrators and chief executive officers of health maintenance organizations (HMOs), and doctors’ apathy towards the quality of the care they administer. The health care system should not be filled with disconcerting aspects because, after all, the care given in hospitals indirectly represents society’s values for caring for its sick and dying and its respect for one’s quality of life. Nurses are the health care system’s symbol of strength that exudes “care, knowledge, and trust that is critical to patients’ survival” (Gordon 279). Nurses must quickly switch their focus from caring for the patients’ needs, to assisting in crises, to tending to the needs of the patients’ relatives and friends. In times of emergencies in hospitals, nurses are the first responders; they then call a physician and an emergency-response team. When “the patient is stable, [the physician] and the emergency-response team walk out of the treatment area, but the nurses continue to comfort the shaken [patients]” (Gordon 276). Nurses are the first to come and last to leave. This role as the patient’s lifesaver and source of comfort comes from the fact that tending to the body and the soul is a nurse’s major job description. The nursing career is: A matter of life


Cited: Hechinger, Fred. "They Tortured My Mother." The American Values Reader. Comp. Harvey S. Weiner and Nora Eisenberg. New York: Longman, 1999. 241-242. Gordon, Suzanne. "What Nurses Stand For." The American Values Reader. Comp. Harvey S. Weiner and Nora Eisenberg. New York: Longman, 1999. 275-284. Simpson, George. "The War Room At Bellevue." The American Values Reader. Comp. Harvey S. Weiner and Nora Eisenberg. New York: Longman, 1999. 245-250.

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Good Essays

    My Nursing Career Essay

    • 983 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Nursing is, by definition, “a profession or practice of providing care for the sick and infirm”. However, that is not everything. A nurse is a caregiver, a provider, a supporter, and a friend. A nurse is a mediator, working as the middleman between the family and physician. Not only do nurses physically help save the lives of their patients, but they also provide emotional support to the patient and the patient’s family. Being a nurse reaches far beyond the scope of simply administering medication and providing physical care; to me, a nurse is a life-saver.…

    • 983 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    Emergency room nurses firstly ask the patient what their chief complaint is upon arrival. The chief complaint labels the patient, and gives them a triage level based on the amount of resources needed to intervene. The chief complaint (or illness) is the nurse’s focus of his/her practice. The nurse also takes into consideration the need to educate the patient and his or her own readiness to learn. All of these factors help reach the goal of making the patient “feel” better and regain health. Below is a model of how nurses in the emergency room revolve directly around the patient.…

    • 2710 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Now that I have fulfilled my goal of completing my bachelors in nursing, I aim to challenge myself further by obtaining a master’s of science in nursing. The independence and autonomy required to provide high complexity care is crucial in an emergency setting and these traits are what draw me to the role of a nurse practitioner. My experiences as an emergency room nurse have enhanced my knowledge and ability to manage and care for critically acute, as well as chronically ill patients varying in ages from infant to elderly, with different cultural and religious backgrounds. Becoming a nurse practitioner will allow me to continue providing care to varying populations, with a variety of health issues, while still giving me the opportunity to make a difference in people’s health and overall well-being.…

    • 588 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Since the start of medical history, nurses have been at patients sides and tending to their wounds. Nurses are described as the first line of defense for the patient. Doctors do not spend the time that nurses do at the patient’s side and nurturing them back to health. However, nurses do not get the credit they deserve and are mistreated most of the time. Many push past this mistreatment and continue to tent to the lives of their patients. Nurses tend to the young by being an advocate for their needs, tend to the elderly by helping them cross the bridge to the afterlife and tend to the doctors as help but only get mistreated in return.…

    • 679 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    evidenced based nursing

    • 1812 Words
    • 5 Pages

    Patient- and Family-Centered Care and the Nurse ’ s Role. (2012, February 1). Retrieved November 15, 2014, from http://www.nh.gov/safety/divisions/fstems/ems/documents/aapfcc.pdf…

    • 1812 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Hat1 Task 2

    • 2593 Words
    • 11 Pages

    When a nurse has gone through a tragic situation like this, they can remember those large and small things that were done for their loved one and the impact it had. Being able to bring this life experience to the situation allows a nurse to connect on a deeper level. This connection assists with enhancing the quality of life and will ultimately influence the course of the illness in a positive manner. Keeping the patient…

    • 2593 Words
    • 11 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    I was hospitalized for three weeks at Seattle Children’s after enduring emergency surgery to remove a rare tumor in my large intestine. What I figured was random stomach pain was life threatening. Since I have endured so much in my life, it is not easy for me to be emotional. When I found out that I needed surgery in a mere few hours I did not know how to process my emotions. Being in the hospital taught me that I need to take what may seem meaningless as something that could be serious. I learned to face emotions instead of avoiding them. Throughout the time I was at Children's Hospital the nurses played a vital role in not just my physical, but my emotional recovery. Nurses take the responsibility for your life, and give hope that you will recover. The nurses that I met had deep and powerful relationships with each patient and played a valuable role in all measures of care. Nursing is a career composed of leadership, integrity, and non-stop learning. As a patient I was able to observe over 30 nurses and their interactions with other patients. It inspired me that one person can have such an astonishing impact on numerous people. As a future career, I hope to be a registered nurse at Children's Hospital to assume the role that I so admired of my nurses.…

    • 681 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    | Nurses show concern everyday by listening to patient’s needs and worries. Nurses are at the forefront for the patient’s interpersonal needs and are advocates for them in many ways. They keep them informed of their plan of care and ensure their personal safety. Altruism is also demonstrated when working with our colleagues and other health care professionals. Nurses will be cooperative with changing of shifts, schedule changes, and provide teamwork by offering help to colleagues when they are needed (Johnson, Haigh, & Yayes-Bolton, 2007). Altruism is also exhibited by the nurse when he or she puts their patients first by having to sometimes work…

    • 1251 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Nursing is a profession where we have to work collaboratively with both our colleagues and the interdisciplinary team. In emergency like cardiac arrest, if nurses work as a team without any role confusion, time is saved resulting in saving many precious lives.…

    • 536 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Inside the small, dimly light, crowded house, there was a noisy chatter and concern filling the room. I stood there afraid to ask what was happening because inside I felt that the answer was going to change my world. People shuffled by me not saying anything, until I heard a voice say, “We have to talk. There has been an accident with your mom. She’s been shot”. Suddenly, I became aware of my heartbeat, racing faster than the people running around me, the room began to spin and I knew that my world would never be the same. Hospital visits became the norm for me during my mother’s recovery. I remember her nurses constantly reaffirmed how lucky my mom was to have survived being hit by a stray bullet. The care from the nurses during that time extended beyond my mom, they tended to me as well. That moment was filled with so much unknown, but it was the nurses who remained by our sides never letting us go through that experience alone. That experience along with my experience as a Certified Nursing Assistant, I have learned that while a nurse can be defined as someone who cares for a person when they are sick,…

    • 632 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    The Benefits Of Nursing

    • 345 Words
    • 2 Pages

    Not only transforming health care facilities round the globe, a nurse makes a difference to people’s lives. The moments of interaction may be as short as a visit to ‘Emergency’ or may be as long as helping someone to struggle with their disability and rehabilitation. The positive vibes and their unconditional love touch their…

    • 345 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Nursing, as a profession, makes up the biggest portion of our nation’s health care. When taking care of patients, nurses have a direct impact on the care of the patient. The closeness to patients and having a direct effect on patient outcomes, gives nurses the ability to effect the healthcare system. Nurses will come in contact with a diverse range of patients and will need to act as leaders by delivering safe patient care. Nurses need to be able to succeed in this profession. (The…

    • 833 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    The study also found that Americans scheduled for routine surgeries run a 31 percent greater risk of dying if they are admitted to a hospital with a severe shortage of nurses. That’s approximately one-fifth of the up to 98,000 deaths that occur lack year as a result of medical errors. Nurse’s care for an n average of four patients at time, with the risk of death increasing by 7 percent for each additional patient cared for over the baseline number. A poll was conducted and it was revealed that more than half of Americans believe the quality of health care is affected, “a great deal” by a shortage of nurses.…

    • 1314 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Nursing and Person

    • 806 Words
    • 4 Pages

    The person is a complex and dynamic being with unique values, behaviours and attributes that must be considered through a holistic approach (Pender, 1990). As a nurse in the intensive care environment it can easily become commonplace to see the person laying in the bed as nothing more than a diagnosis with issues that require fixing based on scientific facts and technical competence (McCormack, 2003). From this perspective, the person’s dignity and values will be overlooked and the holistic needs of the person will not be met.…

    • 806 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Nursing education has progressed throughout history from one of uneducated lay persons to the current standards we know today. As the career has progressed it has become apparent that there is a need for a skilled labor forced trained to deal with the sick and dying, “the provision of nursing care by American women…demonstrated the effectiveness of skilled nursing on improving outcomes for sick and injured soldiers” (Creasia & Friberg, 2011, p. 4). However, as the career progresses so does the need for more specialized training amongst nurses to help them deal with the changing atmosphere of patient care. The future of nursing is trending towards care that involves not only treating the signs and symptoms, but enhancing the patient’s health through prevention and education. In order to meet these new demands the nurse of today needs to be skilled to handle these changes.…

    • 1117 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Good Essays