NRS 430 DQ Describe how the nursing profession is viewed by the general public

NRS 430 DQ Describe how the nursing profession is viewed by the general public

NRS 430 DQ Describe how the nursing profession is viewed by the general public

Review the Institute of Medicine’s 2010 report “The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health.” Write a 750‐1,000 word paper discussing the influence of the IOM report on nursing practice. Include the following:

  1. Summarize the four messages outlined in the IOM report and explain why these are significant to nursing practice.
  2. Discuss the direct influence the IOM report has on nursing education and nursing leadership. Describe the benefits and opportunities for BSN‐prepared nurses.
  3. Explain why it is important that a nurse’s role and education evolve to meet the needs of an aging and increasingly diverse population.
  4. Discuss the significance of professional development, or lifelong learning, and its relevance in caring for diverse populations across the life span and within the health‐illness continuum.
  5. Discuss how nurses can assist in effectively managing patient care within an evolving health care system.

I think the nursing profession is generally viewed positively by the general public. According to the American Nurses Association (2022), “21st Century nursing is the glue that holds a patient’s health care journey together. Nurses work tirelessly to identify and protect the needs of the individual.” I could not agree more. Nurses take care of individuals in all aspects of care from the moment they are born to the moment they die. We, nurses, are the eyes and ears of health care and I think the general public knows and feels this through our care. In the hospital setting, patients generally see their nurse more than any other person or department in the hospital. During their time in the hospital, unable to connect with loved ones, they connect and rely on their nurse for emotional and physical comfort and care. An engaged, thoughtful, and knowledgeable nurse can influence the patient, and thus, the public’s perception of nursing. Word of mouth and reviews are a few ways my hospital continues to work at an increased patient capacity. Many of my own patients have stated they prefer to come to my hospital for our excellent care, food, and private rooms.

A few ways we can connect to the public and discuss the nurse’s role and scope within the health care could be during admission education and media outlets. During admission the nurse should be clearly explaining the nurse’s role in and throughout their care. This way, boundaries can be set, and the patient can know what to expect from their nurse. This can spread from word of mouth. This can also spread through social media. There are many videos, blogs, pictures, and articles both good, bad, true and false that show light on the nursing profession and role. We need to work on portraying a more accurate description of a nurse and the nursing role in media and television. Media portrays inconsistent images for the role of a nurse and often displays the nurse in inaccurate, highly varied or in extreme cases (Godsey, Houghton, Hayes 2020). By setting a clear and accurate image of the current nurse through social media and television, the general public can have an educated and true understanding of the nurse and their role in health care.

NRS 430 DQ Describe how the nursing profession is viewed by the general public

American Nurses Association (2022). What is Nursing?

Godsey, J. A., Houghton, D. M., & Hayes, T. (2020). Registered nurse perceptions of factors contributing to the inconsistent brand image of the nursing profession. Nursing outlook68(6), 808–821.

The actual public image of nursing is diverse and different from what we see and heard. The public perceive a nurse as just someone who assists the doctors during and after treatment of the illness assisting the patient in keeping up his personal hygiene, giving the medications as prescribed by the doctor, dressing wounds and ensuring the welfare of the patient. Even in some movies, television shows and social media, nurses are portrayed as attractive and flirty rather than in a professional manner (Girvin et al, 2016). Some people’s opinion of nurses depends on their experience during hospitalization.


The image is partly self- created by nurses due to their invisibility and their lack of public discourse. Nurses derive their self–concept and professional identity from their public image, work environment, work values, education and traditional social and cultural values (Hoeve et al, 2014). Factors contributing to nursing’s inconsistent image include a lack of leadership development, lack of professionalism, portrayals in the media and online, patients’ personal experiences, treatment by other professional colleagues and gender role assumptions (Godsey et al, 2020).

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In the third world countries, nursing is viewed as a lucrative profession to earn more money. In some societies, nursing is not encouraged by parents. This is turn creates a shortage of nurses as well as contributing to gender bias in the profession.

To improve the public image, and to obtain a stronger position in health care organizations, nurses need to increase their visibility and aim to be a role model. This could be realized by ongoing education and a challenging work environment that encourages nurses to stand up for themselves.

Furthermore, nurses should make better use of strategic positions, such as CA manager, nurse educator, or clinical nurse specialist and use their professionalism to show the public, what their work really entails. Nursing as a Profession: As healthcare professionals, nurses are accountable to uphold the values and principles espoused by the profession itself. The Code of Ethics for Nurses (ANA, 2010), similarly emphasizes the accountability of the nurse in upholding ethical standards related to patients and recipients of care, self and others, and the profession as a whole (Dickerson, 2015).

Dickerson, Pam. (2015). Changing Views: Influencing how the public sees nursing. Ohio Nurse.

Girvin, J., Jackson, D., & Hutchinson, M. (2016). Contemporary public perceptions of nursing: a systematic review and narrative synthesis of the international research evidence. Journal of nursing management24(8), 994-1006.

Godsey, J. A., Houghton, D. M., & Hayes, T. (2020). Registered nurse perceptions of factors contributing to the inconsistent brand image of the nursing profession. Nursing outlook68(6), 808-821.

Hoeve, Y. T., Jansen, G., & Roodbol, P. (2014). The nursing profession: Public image, self‐concept and professional identity. A discussion paper. Journal of Advanced Nursing70(2), 295-309.

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I would like to believe that for the most part, nurses are viewed as ethical, responsible, empathetic, hardworking, caring, compassionate, and essential individuals. In my 2 years of working bedside as a nurse, I still have however unfortunately encountered disrespectful and ungrateful patients or family members, who have made threats towards me, or said awful things to me, even though I was the one providing care to them. I try not to take things like that personally, because I imagine those people must have deeper issues, and they probably treat everyone that way. I will however say that, since Covid erupted in our country, I see nurses are finally getting the recognition that was lacking for so many years. With the massive nursing shortage and so many nurses leaving beside during the pandemic, more people in the public began to recognize how vital nurses are to the entire overall health care system. With the alarming number of nurses leaving bedside, the wait times in ED were much longer, the patient to staff ratio increased to unsafe numbers and everyone saw the burn out effects from the pandemic.

The public’s perception of nurses can either steam from a personal experience with a “good or bad nurse,” in that person’s eyes, but unfortunately much of the public gets their information from the news or social media. With that being said, if a nurse makes a mistake, or medical error occurs, and it gets leaked to the news media, a large majority of the public can lose trust in nurses. I remember when I was in nursing school, and that case involving Radonda Vaught occurred, so many people were talking about her and hanging her out to dry. She made a critical mistake, but it could happen to the best nurse, yet when that story hit the news, it had people questioning many nurses’ integrity as a whole.

As nurses we swore by the Code of Ethics when we graduated nursing school and these ethics help hold nurses accountable to others, and to ourselves. Being a nurse who is providing care to someone in need is a responsibility that I don’t take lightly because I feel it is an honor and privilege to call myself a nurse. Nurses could help educate the public on their role in the profession by hospitals and other healthcare organizations doing more community outreach to the public and educating them about health issues that affect people in that area or age group. Not only would this community outreach be a great way to help build a better relationship with the community, but it could possibly help gain the trust of those who distrust nurses or healthcare providers as a whole.

A group of nurses in Utah started a community outreach project called “Stop the Bleed.” These nurses organized an outreach teaching the community how to handle trauma cases from hemorrhages to mass causality events. The reason behind this is because the number one cause of death in the age range of 1-44 years old is trauma. After the teaching was performed, 94% of participants said the course was presented in simple terms, and 86% said they felt more confident about their ability to stop bleeding. 73% of participants said they felt more prepared to respond to emergencies after training was complete, and 95% of the trainees said they were comfortable passing along newly learned abilities.



Green, S. (2018). Advanced Professional Standards. [E-book]. Dynamics in nursing: Art and science of professional practice. Grand Canyon University.


Liu, S., Curren, J., Sobocinski, K., Zambardino, D., Smith, L., Rosenberg, J., Leahy, N., Winchell, R., & Narayan, M. (2019). Stop the Bleed: A nurse-driven community outreach initiative. International Journal of Academic Medicine5(2), 105.