Nursing is an Art and a Science

art_scienceWe hear that nursing is an art and a science all of the time.

In every nursing book we pick up, we are reminded of that fact.

I have a BA in zoology, and an ADN in nursing, so I was able to make captain in the Army Reserves, but I could not make major because I did not have a branch specific bachelor’s degree, BSN.

When I thought I would stay in for 20 years and get the retirement, I started an RN to BSN program online and was again reminded that nursing is an art and a science.

The only problem I had was that every class I was required to take was so focused on the art of nursing, that the science of nursing did not get covered very well.

I freely admit that I’m a “Head” person as opposed to the “Heart” people as indicated by various psychological, attitude tests.

I admit that the best nurses are very caring and can bond with their patients and sooth their minds much better than I can.

I’m not saying there is anything wrong with it; in fact, I admire people that really care about their patients, and let their patients know that they are cared for.

That being said, I think it is time that we, as nurses, stepped up to the plate and embraced the science of nursing.

The science of nursing

Physicians are moving towards “Evidence Based Medicine” and I think it is time that we, as nurses, do the same thing.

Nursing always scores high in the rankings of the most trusted and the most respected careers, but it wasn’t all that long ago when there was some debate on whether or not nursing was actually a profession, or just a job.

In order to obtain the respect that we are due, I think it is imperative that we look at the science of nursing.

We need to build a better community of nurses that want to advance the field and share knowledge.

Is there a better way to secure an IV line?  God knows I haven’t made a “proper chevron” since nursing school.

Is it really worth checking the balloon on a Foley catheter before inserting it, knowing that the wrinkles that are formed when the balloon is collapsed again can irritate the urethral epithelial cells?

Why do we “Dip” a clean catch mid-stream urine, when we know that we will send it for a culture if it comes back positive.

“It is time to act like the professionals we are, while we provide that caring smile.”

But now the only bacteria we will grow are the ones that were on the urine dip stick we grabbed out of the dirty utility room, instead of using a sterile syringe to get a sample out of the cup and applying that to the dip stick, leaving the original sample as clean as possible for the culture?

There are so many aspects of nursing that need to be reviewed with the filter of science, but far too often, this is bashed down and the only good nurses are the ones that lead with their hearts.

Make a difference

The best nurses are those that can incorporate the Art and the Science of nursing.

I’ll work on my artistic abilities, but can I please get some cooperation from others and actually treat our noble profession as having scientific validity?

Nurses make a huge difference in the lives of their patients.

They and their families will remember if we were nice or not, and that is very important, but equally important, did we prevent a nosocomial infection by using a better technique that was developed after we went through nursing school years ago?

It is time to show the world that we are more than just a caring smile in a bright white dress.

It is time to act like the professionals we are, while we provide that caring smile (but boy am I happy I don’t have to wear that dress.)

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