Miss Nightingale’s Idea is Healthcare’s Salvation

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Nursing needs to go back to basics, to our roots. It is not our job to get by day to day. Our job is to fix our hopelessly dysfunctional healthcare ‘system,’ and to overcome any and all opposition in our quest. Profit and corruption rule American health care today: nurses have a sacred duty to make it right. Nurses find a way and get it done. Nurses prioritize. Nurses clean up the messes left by others’ irresponsibility and error. Nurses protect their patients. Surviving another shift does NOT meet those requirements, if it involves helping such a disaster persist that much longer.

Sandra Yamane

Florence Nightingale

It is no surprise to me that Miss Nightingale had it right all along.  It seems like the healthcare system has finally seen the light and is something that nurses have known about a long time. The old strategy or paradigm included a system that focused on numbers and profits; physicians and their decisions; procedures and tests; local providers and services; and making patients better customers. The key, according to Porter and Lee, in their article, “The Strategy that Will Fix Health Care”, is switching to a system that values patient outcomes over profitability.  The new system places the patient at the center of all functions and activities and has a name, patient centered care. Patient centered care is everywhere these days and patient empowerment and advocacy are at the heart of the salvation of healthcare. Florence Nightingale knew this back in 1860 (Notes on Nursing) and wrote regarding how the nurse…

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  1. Nurses do need training in leadership, and we also need backing: BIG backing, from money and power. We need to get a firm grip on the steering wheel to drive ourselves forward, and overcoming the current system is going to take a MAJOR effort, backed by the public. We do have a responsibility to set things right for patients. Apathy, inertia, fear, laziness, “it’s not my problem” attitude, and defeatism are our biggest problems in nursing. Time to start looking at other successful movements/uprisings and learn from those.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We have work to do, no doubt. Learning from success is a great idea. Nurses need to build the confidence to look outside of nursing for ideas, the way successful people do. Thanks for your great points! – Greg


  2. I am really enjoying your blog. For the past five years my 93 year old Mother has been in hospitals and then a nursing home, which has brought me right up to date with what’s going on in ‘the system’.
    Keep up your good work….and here’s to all the hard working, caring nurses who are doing their very best despite all the hurdles that they are up against.
    Yes, we can all learn a great deal from Florence Nightingale. Janet:)

    Liked by 1 person

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