Why is Nursing viewed as a mostly female profession? [Op-Ed]
This is why our Nurses do deserve a public recognition they did earn, but they are yet to be fully acknowledged and compensated for by our prosperous health care organizations.
While thinking about the National Nurses Week we are celebrating in May, one idea dawned on me:
One very simple, I must admit: Why are most of our nurses women, not men?; or why is that the social expectation that they should be, making it also the reality of a profession where currently most of its members are females?
Women have manifestly suffered a position of inequality around the world, but particularly in our own Western societies, presumably very advanced in the practice of universal values such gender equality, open democracy and general principles of equanimity and fairness.
Let’s take for example the profession we are celebrating this month in the U.S., one of the noblest, most exhausting and most indispensable in our health system— and yet not equally recognized and compensated for as, say, that other of their colleagues —although not their peers— the medical doctors.
The nurses are still the ones who carry the heavy burden and literally get their “hands dirty”
In our healthcare system, the nurses are still the ones who carry the heavy burden and literally get their “hands dirty” with the most demanding part of the profession: caring for the infirmed or the dying.
The Hippocratic Oath falls squarely on the shoulders of mostly female nurses that deal with the grueling one-on-one interaction with the patients.
I love my doctors, when I inevitably have to - against my will - go see them. However, it is not the doctor who “takes the time” with me because they are usually rushed seeing dozens of other patients a day.
It is the nurse, probably busier than the doctor, who is the one who gives personalized care before and after the doctor finally “sees the patient” - usually for just a few minutes.
It is an impersonal medical system, we all know, in a country with the most technologically advanced medical care in the world.
If it weren’t for the nurses, however, little would be left to be proud of
If it weren’t for the nurses, however, little would be left to be proud of, frankly speaking.
That is why I want to say this week, THANK YOU, Nurses, for all the hard work you do.
We thank you not only for your humanity and your compassionate bedside manner with the sick, but also because you have fought to occupy positions of leadership as professors or as deans — like Dr. Antonia 'Toni' Villarruel, Dean of the School of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania, the number one school of nursing in the U.S., based here in Philadelphia.
Dr. Villarruel is the proud daughter of parents who immigrated from Mexico, who was born in Michigan (a ‘Mechicana’, as she playfully calls herself).
We are extremely honored that she acceped to be the Chairwoman of the Advisory Board of the #ALDIATopNurses 2021, our annual edition and virtual program you all will see at the end of this month.
To all nurses, AL DÍA News Media will celebrate you at the end of May, on the 26th (mark your calendar!), and pay you the homage you all deserve.
Thank you, Toni!