Nursing is a noble and virtuous profession and is probably one of the most prominent and important sectors of the health care system that allows you to see people at their worst, turn it around, and nurture them to become their best. The main goal of the nurse is to provide care, comfort, and support to their patients. This job not only changes the patients’ lives, but it changes the feel of the community and world around us. However, people in Kashmir still hold some misunderstandings vis-à-vis the nursing profession. Many people look down on nurses or minimize what they do. A heap of this is caused by lasting misconceptions that are no longer true. Some of the wrong perceptions regarding this profession are: Nurses are just doctors’ helpers. Nurses are all women. Nurses are less intelligent. All nurses are the same. Anyone can get a nursing job. Nursing is just grunt work. Despite these misconceptions, nurses possess a true generosity of spirit and play a prominent role all over the world in conflict zones like that in Kashmir. Nurses minimize the suffering of victims. Let us take the example of the pellet victims in Kashmir. The plight of pellet victims is such that they are a disturbing lot owing to the loss they had to undergo. In such trying and testing times the nurses have provided solace to the suffering victims. The nurses are fully acquainted with the anatomy and physiology of normal eyes and their management care. When the pellet victim’s emotions are high, he might be frightened for the fear of losing his eyesight and many other problems associated with an eye injury. During these circumstances, a nurse is supposed to receive the pellet victim, with full generosity and respect. The nurse offers the victim the level of his/her comfort assuring the victim that the best healthcare will be provided to him. The entire feasible environment is given to the victim by the nurse. Kashmir valley has been witnessing turmoil for almost three decades now. The cases of mental trauma are on the increase and here also the role of the nurses comes into play.
The role of a nurse is quite involved in relieving the anxiety and depression among those patients who need psychiatric care. Given the number of such cases, a lot of efforts and responsibilities are being shared by the nurses to get those patients to lead a normal life again. In addition, the valley of Kashmir is faced with another menace and that is drug abuse. Kashmir is treading the same path as Punjab and other conflict-hit States in North East and other areas. Since we have a dearth of healthcare facilities for such patients, the nurses can do wonders as in the absence of medicos the nurses who are trained in psychiatric healthcare can chip in and provide the succor and relief needed in this sector. Only the nurses can do this job by reaching the alarming areas, villages to make a great effort to council the people and educate the general people about the consequences of drug abuse. The nurse helps the patient acknowledge his substance problem and find alternative ways to cope with the stress. Nursing professionals can play an important role in helping patients achieve recovery and stay drug-free. In any hospital setting, while everyone seemingly appears strange, you hardly dare to express your grievances only to the nurses. This seems to be the only option once one is confronted with a situation like dealing with one’s entry into a hospital. The nursing profession has been kept in wraps as a result certain misconceptions have been generated about the profession. It’s time to dispel such false notions, misconceptions, and wrong perceptions of nursing once and for all. And if you are considering a medical career, don’t let these false perceptions about nursing turn you off from a potentially rewarding career. The world needs more good nurses as our sufferings mount with every passing day.
(The author is pursuing B.Sc Nursing at Desh Bhagat College of Nursing, Punjab. Views are his own)