The Truth About Nursing
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Frequently Asked Questions about Nurses and Nursing

General information on nurses and nursing

The value of nursing

The media's effect on nursing and what can be done about it

The Truth About Nursing's work

Nurse-friendly language

New ways to think about nursing

Workplace difficulty? Check out our suggestions

How can I become a nurse?

 
General information on nurses and nursing

What is nursing? What do nurses do? answer...

How can I become a nurse? answer...

Just how undervalued and underfunded is nursing? answer...

Who are nurse practitioners and what do they do? answer...

What is the nursing shortage and why does it exist? answer...

What are problems thwarting nursing recruitment and retention? answer...

Are you sure nurses are autonomous? Based on what I've seen, it sure looks like physicians are calling the shots. answer...

Magnet status: What it is, what it is not and what it could be. read more...

How many nurses are there? How old are they? Do they outnumber physicians? answers...

How is nurse migration affecting nurses and the nursing shortage? answers...

Nursing professors: Planning your curriculum? We have ideas...

 
The value of nursing

What happens to patients when nurses are short-staffed? answer...

Do physicians deliver better care than Advanced Practice Nurses? answer...

Landmark JAMA study finds nurses to be autonomous, skilled; nation reels. read more...

Learn about the value of school nurses more...

 
The media's effect on nursing and what can be done about it

Come on. Even if the mass media does ignore nursing, or present it inaccurately, how can that possibly affect nursing in real life? answer...

OK, fine. I can see that some media probably affects how people think about and act toward nursing, like maybe a respected newspaper or current affairs show on TV. But how can some TV drama, sitcom or commercial affect people that way? People know enough not to take that stuff seriously! answer...

I get that the public health community and even Hollywood itself believes that the entertainment media has a big effect on real world health. But is there any actual research showing it affects what people think and do about health issues like nursing? answer...

Well, if all that research shows how influential Hollywood is on health care--and Hollywood itself claims credit for improving the world through "medical accuracy"--why won't it admit that its portrayal of nursing is equally influential, and take steps to fix it? Especially since the nursing shortage is now a global public health crisis. answer...

What is the problem with the naughty nurse stereotype? I mean, no one believes that nurses really dress like that! answer...

But I'm young and hot and I love people to think nurses are sexy! Promiscuous girls rule! Anyone who objects to the "naughty nurse" image must be an old hag "nursing leader" who hates sex and freedom, right? answer...

Why do you actually display the naughty nurse imagery you object to? Aren't you promoting the same thing you're complaining about?! Ha ha! answer...

But that television show you're complaining about just happens to be about physicians. How can you expect it to show nurses or nursing? answer...

Nurses are just wonderful, but you really can't expect Hollywood to focus on them, can you? After all, popular media products have to be dramatic and exciting. Why don't you just focus on getting a nursing documentary on PBS or basic cable? answer...

Get a sense of humor! How could jokes possibly affect the way people think about nursing? answer...

Is the world flat? Read the Truth's early 2005 op-ed about addressing the nursing shortage by confronting society's deeply held view--embodied in the mass media--that nurses are just peripheral physician subordinates. answer...

curriculum planning difficultiesShould we create a Museum of Modern Nursing to show the world how vital, exciting, and technologically advanced nursing really is? answer...

The Nobel Prize in Nursing: Nurses' achievements merit international recognition. See the op-ed we wrote...

 
The Truth About Nursing's work

You're always criticizing the mass media's treatment of nursing. But don't you think nursing itself and society as a whole bear some responsibility for poor understanding of nursing, and for the profession's problems generally? answer...

Why aren't you more excited that public opinion polls often put nurses at the top of the list of "most trusted" and "most ethical" professions? answer...

You're always asking the media to change what it's doing, or even to withdraw a media product completely. Don't you think people have a right to say whatever they want? You act like the speech police! answer...

Why are you so darn critical of everything the media says about nursing? Don't you know that you catch more flies with honey than vinegar, that if you can't say something nice you shouldn't say anything at all, and that sugar and spice and everything nice, that's what little nurses are made of? answer...

Does The Truth About Nursing have some issue with physicians? It seems like you sometimes minimize their role in health care, or criticize something a physician has said or done. answer...

Don't you want nurses to be compassionate? You seem uncomfortable when nurses are described that way, and you focus instead on nurses' training and skills. answer...

Why is some of the Truth's media analysis informal, irreverent or satirical? It's pretty rare to see a serious advocacy group take that approach. answer...

You're critical of a lot of what the media does, but you also try to be fair even to media products that you think cause harm to nursing. Aren't advocacy groups supposed to argue that everything they dislike is pure evil? answer...

Why do the Truth's media reviews discuss overall merit, not just nursing? answer...

 
Nurse-friendly language

What is nurse-friendly language and why is it important? answer...

Should we use the term "medicine" to refer to health care generally? answer...

"You could be a doctor!" counter-statement...

Are nurses angels of mercy? answer...

Do nurses need a new name? answer...

Should we refer to every non-physician caregiver as a "nurse" no matter what type or level of training that person has? answer...

Is it OK if we keep saying that only nurses who currently work at the bedside are "real nurses?" Demonizing everyone else helps us fight for workers' rights! answer...

Is nursing a subspecialty of medicine? answer...

Should we refer to physicians as "doctors?" answer...

OK, if I promise to say "physicians," not "doctors," may I go to the "physician's office?" May I "take my loved one to the physician?" answer...

Should we refer to physician care plans as "orders?" answer...

Should we refer to breastfeeding as "nursing?" answer...

You want a career in science? Then why are you applying to nursing school? answer...

Should we use the indefinite pronoun "she" to refer to nurses, since most nurses are female? answer...

Can robots be nurses? answer...

 
New ways to think about nursing

Do physicians help nurses improve health? AKA:  Are physicians the captains of the health care ship?) answer...

Why do you call for more discussion of nursing errors and nursing malpractice in the mainstream media? answer...

Yo, dog, what's up with this nursing thing? Are you nuts? (AKA: Why men should become nurses.) answer...

 
Suggestions for Nurses Having Problems in the Workplace

Problems in the workplace? some general suggestions...

Sexually harassed by your patients? one solution...

What is physician disruptive behavior and why does it exist? answers...

 
How Can I Become a Nurse?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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