We live in a very diverse society with people from many different countries and cultures, therefore we need nursing graduates who are caring. As a nurse, you spend most of your time thinking about how others are feeling, and you must be willing to put their needs before your own. Studies have shown that most students have low levels of caring, suggesting the critical need for a caring educational foundation. Due to the increased demand for nursing professionals, education systems can sometimes fall short in the area of care. During their process of recruitment, educational systems often fail to look for individuals who have caring attributes under the assumption that any individual choosing this career path is already caring.
Understanding the Importance of Care
There has been a noticeable gap between what nursing professionals consider caring and what patients consider caring. For this reason, nurses need to make sure that their patients’ needs are met. This way the nurse can be confident that the patient’s definition of care is met (Bagnall, 2018). Although results show that both students have low levels of caring, there is also a significant gap in the care provided among those with an associate degree in nursing and those with a bachelor’s in nursing. Because of this gap, the different types of caring attributes must be explored early on. Being mindful and showing compassion forces us as individuals to look beyond ourselves and connect with others. As a nurse, you must be able to put your issues aside and connect with patients and their families daily. This trait helps individuals better understand themselves and others.
Care in the Workplace
“Caring within a health-care environment is predicated upon organizational support and is linked to positive patient, nursing, and organizational outcomes (Huddleston, 2014).” (Bagnall, 2018). Today we see that workplace demands have become prioritized over patient care. Increased workloads, staff shortages, and the demand for efficiency sometimes limit the nurse’s ability to provide the best care to the patient. This is only one example of an organizational conflict that nurses face daily. Because the work environment is so demanding, colleges of nursing must provide students with a caring educational experience in the hopes of nurturing caring nursing professionals who can survive in such environments.
Care is contagious. It is vitally important that colleges of nursing set the foundation and nurture every individual who goes through the program. Instilling this trait in nursing students early on prepares them to thrive in challenging work environments. The desire to care for and provide exceptional service to others can be such a rewarding profession.
- Bagnall, L. A., Taliaferro, D., & Underdahl, L. (2018). Nursing Students, Caring Attributes, and Opportunities for Educators. International Journal for Human Caring, 22(3), 126–135. http://dx.doi.org.chamberlainuniversity.idm.oclc.org/10.20467/1091-5710.22.3.126