Stereotypes are the human social category of judgment in terms of membership of their group. It is generally known, but the picture or concept of a specific sort of individual is fixed and oversimplified. These may be adverse judgment linked to activities or actions that are prejudicial to other social groups. Negative stereotypes can produce other social groups ‘ false or adverse perceptions that can become truth across self-fulfilling prediction.
Many researchers say that nurses are living in a dual framework that embraces the social and nursing worlds. They argue that there are opposing opinions of these two worlds towards nurses. That is, although nurses are being driven to create professional status, society is still expecting them to stay in a position of dependence. The discrepancies between the stereotypical perspective of a nurse’s attributes and the view of the nurses may lead to casualties, issues or disillusionment with a nursing profession after a fresh graduate joins the practice.
With the significant point of the nursing shortage, it is essential to investigate possible inconsistencies that occur and address methods to prevent them. Studies analyzing the stereotypical perspective of the features of a nurse showed that the learners had aspirational opinions of the profession with notions of caring, empathy and nursing, but after exposed to skills and experiences it turned to more practical, documentary and functional abilities (Hoeve et al.,2014).
Physicians and nurses have shared a complex connection throughout history, one often affected by social status, gender, authority, and views. Quite presumably, the view of nurses by physicians might have been affected by the role of nurses as nurses all through the pre-Nightingale period; throughout this moment, no excellent reputation given to women. Nursing was perceived as’ laborious and paid very less,’ drawing individuals deemed unsuitable for other occupations. A straightforward ranking was the traditional connection, where physicians are superior to nurses.
Besides, medical science was driven by physicians through the benefit of social status and a knowledge monopoly. Continuing into the 1990s, the connection between physicians and nurses emerged to assist patients with the concept of worshipping the medical sciences and emphasizing the status and significance of physicians. In the medical environment, nurses were anticipated to stay quiet and guarantee quick and efficient functioning of the ward rounds (Sollami, A., Caricati, L., & Mancini, T., 2015).
Another public’s perception of nursing is that it is considered a profession that is better suited to women than to men. It was discovered that masculine nurses, for instance, are usually viewed by public and stereotypes as gay, effeminate, less sympathetic and caring than female nurses, and respond severely to the training and development of nursing learners in the system, adding to the shortage of nurses because the career (nursing) is linked with female characters. (Hoeve, Y. T., Jansen, G., & Roodbol, P.,2014).
Nursing is generally viewed positively because of its capacity supply job security and a continuous revenue. It is viewed as a work involving caring, nurturing and teaching, requiring empathy, persistence and endurance as well. Many males regard nursing as demanding the use of complicated technology and thus regard nursing as a prospective profession.
Many academics have figured out that such a cliched public picture of nurses has a adverse impact on the nursing profession, as public perception is highly strong in deciding social standards and values. (Clow et.al, 2014). Fabricated nursing views have traditionally developed the nursing industry’s oppressive situation. As a result, nurses have been restricted to a subordinate role for a long time. The government stereotypes not only impede the drive of nursing to become professional owing to external / environmental limitations, but also influence the inner states of nurses. Different scientists have an effect on the psychological and functional conditions of nurses (Glerean, N., et.al. 2019). Nevertheless, there has been little research in this sector.
When nurses viewed their public perception as low, their intention to leave their job appeared to improve in relation to a lack of professional acceptance at work. Obviously, in order to improve nurses ‘ work efficiency and decrease their inclination for turnover, it is essential to improve the self-perception of both group awareness and nurses. In order to comprehend the roles of nurses and the essential duties they undertake, the nursing profession requires to be explained to the society (Ingwu et.al 2016).
In addition, media plays an important role in strengthening nurses ‘ adverse reputation. The media sometimes depicted descriptions of nurses who are subordinate, helpless, unaffected, and unintelligent. In reality, nurse characters in television series portraying medical scenes rarely show any authority.
The general public is less aware of the separate characteristics of male and female nurses because of their lack of background, which requires more stereotypes to be used to define them (Pratkanis, Breckler, & Greenwald, 2014). As far as nursing students are concerned, there is still a significant gap between the amount of males and females seeking this profession, the views of the future female nurses have more impact on the outcomes. They also define themselves using optimistic adjectives, considering that they see themselves as entering this group of experts in the near future.
One approach to enhance nurses ‘ public picture is to inform the public about the nursing profession’s real nature. Nurses gain from this intervention in two respects. First, it enables nurses to tackle the wider problems that affect them, such as the need for public education about the nature of nursing.
As for the connection between doctor and nurse, both nurses and doctors need a shared learning chance to comprehend the roles of each other and create mutual respect for each other. With the variation of macro-and micro-level actions, nurses can efficiently inform the public and rebuild their persona to stay competitive with the revolution in the nursing profession and the growing identity of nurses.
Apart from teaching the public, monitoring the media is another solution for changing the public picture of nurses. As is noted out from time to time, the media appears to emphasize altered views of nurses for entertainment. As a consequence, audiences integrate these stereotypes to their perception of nurses, resulting in stereotypes being developed. To prevent media influence on the public, actions are needed to alter the media depiction of nurses.
As a consequence, a considerable amount of research investigating the public perception of nurses/nursing has been conducted. These studies have consistently indicated that the public possessed traditionally distorted views of nurses, and that there has been little improvement in the nurses’ image. These studies became a cornerstone for the formation of various nursing groups/organizations to counteract the public stereotypes (Hoeve et.al.,2014).. Furthermore, the studies provided nurses with impetus for the drive to professionalization in nursing.
The studies suggest that both the public domain and the nursing domain appear to provide data that affects the psychological and functional states of nurses. In reality, the research findings tend to maintain such interactions. The findings indicate that nurses who view their social perception negatively usually form a negative self-concept that can lead to low collective self-esteem, work discontent, and low performance growth.
While there are negative impacts of these stereotypes, the findings also show that the professional self-concept of nurses, which can be favorably formed as a consequence of professional socialization and positive private self-esteem, could avoid adverse social impression effects. (Cook, K., & Stoecker, J.2014, November)..
In order to optimize nursing practice, nurses have to enhance their government picture. Nurses need to operate continually with both the people and themselves to create the nursing profession away from negative stereotypes. One alternative to altering the role of nurses in society is to respond to social stereotypes. Other ways to improve a good self-concept and results are reflective practice, professional socialization, and nurse empowerment, thus enhancing the nursing profession. An oppressive condition in nursing will continue without the steady attempts of nurses. However, with the encouragement of nurses to enhance the nursing practice environment, their future practice will be successful.
- Hoeve, Y. T., Jansen, G., & Roodbol, P. (2014). The nursing profession: public image, self-concept and professional identity. A discussion paper. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 70(2), 295–309. doi: 10.1111/jan.12177
- Sollami, A., Caricati, L., & Mancini, T. (2015). Ambivalent stereotypes of nurses and physicians: Acta Biomed for Health Professions, 86, 19–28. doi:10.1107/s0108270101018765/sk1522sup1.cif
- Meiring, A., & van Wyk, N. C. (2013, February 15). THE IMAGE OF NURSES AND NURSING AS PERCEIVED BY THE SOUTH AFRICAN PUBLIC. Africa Journal of Nursing and Midwifery.
- Clow, Kimberley & Ricciardelli, Rose & Bartfay, Wally. (2014). Attitudes and stereotypes of male and female nurses: The influence of social roles and ambivalent sexism. Canadian Journal of Behavioural Science. 46. 446-455. 10.1037/a0034248.
- Cook, K., & Stoecker, J. (2014, November). Healthcare Student Stereotypes: A Systematic Review with Implications for Interprofessional Collaboration. Journal of Research in Interprofessional Practice and Education.
- Glerean, N., Hupli, M., Talman, K., & Haavisto, E. (2019). Perception of nursing profession: Focus group interview among applicants to nursing education, Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, 33, 390-399. doi: 10.1111/scs. 12635
- Ha EH (2017, April 23). How clinical nurses in South Korea perceive the status of the nursing profession: A Q-methodological approach. doi: 10.1111/ijn.12516
- Ingwu, J. A, Ohaeri, B.M, Iroka O.L. (2016, February). The professional image of nursing as perceived by nurses working in tertiary hospitals Enugu, Southeast Nigeria. African Journal of Nursing and Midwifery