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The historical development of nursing science Paper

Nursing has many forms and definition each depending on the culture background. In general nursing can be defined as health care, that is, care of individuals, families and communities, in order to attain, maintain and recover to a good health and gain insight on how to maintain a good health. In the 15th Century, nursing was defined as or seen as an idea of looking after or advising another person.  These did not necessarily mean a woman taking care of its child.

According to International Council of Nurses, nursing has been defined as, “ Nursing encompasses autonomous and collective care of individuals of all ages, families, groups and communities, sick or well and in all setting”. Further continue saying that nursing includes the prevention of illness,  the care of ill, disabled and dying people and promotion of health. The American Nursing Association defines Nursing a science of promotion, protection and optimizing of health and abilities through prevention of illness and injuries. The alienation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatments.

 In the 17th Century nursing was regarded as a low job hierarchy because it was associated with drunkardness and obnoxious behavior. These was so until Florence Nightingale, an educated woman from a middle class changed these perspective to people accepting nursing as a professional career. There were other facts that influenced nursing to be accepted, for example, in 1853, Theodore Fliedner set up a hospital,  and employed nurses who were of good nature. Also a British institute of Nursing Sisters was set up.

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Nursing developed also because of the wars that were taking place. There was need for nurses in order to be able to take care of the falling and hurt soldiers. An example is the Crimean war in the United Kingdom, nurses like Florence Nightingale, was present in order to improve the conditions of the soldiers. In the 1870’s a few developments to nursing were visible, in 1873, Linda Richards graduates from the New England Hospital for Women and Children Training School and officially becomes America’s First Trained Nurse.

Also in 1873, Bellevue Hospital, New York City was the first nursing training institute to be opened based on Florence Nightingale’s principles of nursing. In the 20TH Century, New Zealand was the first country to regulate nursing registration act and so other countries also took soot. It was also in these century that worlds most renounced association was formed, for example, the United States Navy Nurse Corps and American Red Cross Nursing Services.

In the 1960’s nursing became more viewed as a profession because it acquired educational stature as University of Edinburgh initiated the degree in Nursing. These was further anchored by the Americans Association of Colleges of Nursing in 2004, by recommending that all nurses seeking to be professionals should acquire a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree.

Theories of Nursing as a science is a term used to describe the body of knowledge that supports nursing practice.  There are too many theories that describe nursing, hence no defined theories are in place. These theories are constructed to Nursing models, these models include Family nursing, Psychiatric nursing, Children’s nursing, Prenatal nursing, Adult nursing, Community and Rehabilitation nursing, Critical care nursing and also Holistic nursing.

Nursing as a profession entails encompassing the authority for the practice of nursing. It’s a social contract that outlines in writing the rights, responsibilities and duties of nursing. Also it outlines what requirements are necessary and be in place in order to be accepted as a nurse and allowed to practice it. These is through tests, that is, through both educational and practical education. In most if not all countries nursing practice is governed by Law, international and constitutional law.

All these laws are put in place to maintain credential for nurses, put code of ethics, standards and competencies. This professionalism is put in place in order to ensure utmost good quality care for everyone and also protect the nurses from Law suits.The profession combines physical science, nursing theory, social science and technology I caring for all individuals. These individuals are those who are healthy and ill, who have social, emotional, physical, intellectual and spiritual needs. This is without regard to their age or even cultural background.

Nursing science relates to philosophy as it acts as a guide  for nurses to guide their thinking, interpretation, observation and practices ( Seedhouse, 2004). Nursing influence philosophy as it helps understand individual needs and their desires. That individuals are different with  different needs hence what is expected of them and how to manage it. We learn how to appreciate where nursing originated from and the theories attached to it. Also influence psychology as help understand the  emotional make up of individual and how venerable people are and also trend with care.

Nursing science influence education as a discipline as allows the furthering of research towards dealing with the short comings to life. Research is undertaken to assist living for years and in peace. At the same time it helps individual build a career out of it. It allows for good health care because the developments that emanate out of the researches done are made public and these helps individual better understand themselves and help each other. People get to learn how health is been affected and how to deal with it.

Nursing influence social science as it acts as a stepping stone to building a career and being able to acquire a livelihood. When working as a nurse you acquire financial stability that helps one to raise up family. Through nursing people learn how to relate to each other and associate with each other  freely. Be able to identify when a neighbor is in problems or in danger and how well to assist to avoid a tragedy. Also recognize the social epidemics that are prone to mankind and how to deal with it.


1.      Radcliffe, Mark (2000). ‘ Doctors and Nurses: new game.’ British Inc

2.      RCN (2003) ‘Defining Nursing’

3.      Paul Seedhouse (2004), ‘ The Interactional Architecture of the Language Classroom:  A Analysis Perspective,’ Language Learning Monograph Series.

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