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Defining The Professional Nurse; Societal Awareness By Awhanbe Roseline Adeyinka (RN)
Date Posted: 10/Jan/2017
A nurse is an individual who has completed basic education in nursing and is licensed and registered with the nursing and midwifery council of Nigeria to provide preventive, curative and rehabilitative care to individual, families and communities in the country.
 
A nurse is a professional who has acquired and is equipped with specialized knowledge in the field of art and nursing science to render quality healthcare services to the society.
 
The qualities of a nurse include; observation, punctuality, neatness, assertiveness, boldness, politeness, attentiveness, empathy, gentleness, selflessness, intelligence among others. But the society we are, paints different pictures contrary to who the nurse is, on a daily basis various newspapers and blogs present derogatory and defamatory image of the nurse which is born out of long standing lack of knowledge and appropriate information of who a nurse is.
 
The society is bedeviled by these impostors/impersonators who parade themselves as nurses further confusing the society. These impostors lacks qualities mentioned earlier, as well as the knowledge of what it takes to be a professional. These people are tagged ‘’auxiliary nurses’’, they are everywhere across the country. You see them in the markets, filling stations, roads and the streets dressed in a white dress and cap with an apron (navy blue in some parts of the country).
 
The society has suffered untold losses to the auxiliary nurses activities/atrocities ranging from sales of babies, maiming and killing of innocent Nigerian,  swapping of babies, economic hardship where the bread winner of a family is lost, the list is endless, individuals, families and friends affected cannot completely recount their experiences at the hands of this menace in white made possible because the society does not know or refuse to know the difference between who is qualified and who is not to render nursing care to the sick and infirmed; rather the professional nurse is at the receiving end of unjust, cruel and harsh tongue lash from the society being blamed for the crimes committed by untrained, uneducated impostors with headlines like ‘’Nurse kills a teenager’’, Nurse administers overdose, Nurse sells male baby '' without verification of who the actual perpetrators are. 
 
I ask myself several times why the need for auxiliaries in this healthcare system when there are thousands of qualified nurses out there unemployed; the auxiliaries have taken over helped by money loving individuals who owns private hospitals both legal and illegal. 
 
It is high time the society know the difference between the professional nurse and the impostors with the unmerited title 'Nurse'. The society should change the impression that the only thing nurses can do is 'to give injections',  not until this notion is seen and appreciated as wrong and professional nurses are seen and treated as one with unique roles of educators, researchers, advocates, counselor, and caregiver to mention but a few before the menace of/and unpleasant consequences of auxiliary nurses can be totally eradicated. 
 
As members of this human society you have the right as a citizen to be treated by professionals!!!
 
You have the right to demand for the license of your healthcare provider!!!
 
You have the right to your life!!!
 
Not all that glitters is gold so also, not everyone dressed in white and cap is a Nurse.
 
By AwhanbeRoselineAdeyinka (RN).
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