Nurses: The Perfect Patient Advocates

Sandra M. Nettina, MSN, APRN, BC, ANP


Topics in Advanced Practice Nursing eJournal. 2005;5(2) 

In This Article

What Nurses Do

Have you ever called another nurse to find a physician? We all do. It's a well-known fact that the best way to find a doctor is through a nurse! We know that another nurse will advocate for us to find a physician who practices excellent medicine as well as compassionate caring and healing. In fact, we use other nurses to help us find doctors who are more like nurses .

Nurses do this not just for their friends and other nurses; nurses advocate for all patients. We take those in need under our wings, we steer them in the right direction, and sometimes we carry them every step of the way through pain, fear, and hopelessness of illness. We do this better than anybody else in the healthcare system. We do it whether we like the patient or not, whether we get a thank you or not, whether we're having a good day or not. We do it because this is who we are and what our nurturing souls naturally do.

And of course we get discouraged when we only hear whining and complaining, among the patients as well as our peers, when we hear no thank you, when we aren't witnessing positive outcomes, or when we really need a day off. But then we look deeper and we find that we have touched the heart and soul of another person. What other job provides that -- the ability to ease pain, take fear away, and bolster hope? I think parenting may be the only other one. How many professions can say that their job is as important as parenting? I am proud to say that I have done this very important job for 27 years. When I stop and think of the ways in which I have touched people's lives, it definitely keeps me going.