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The effect of media on nursing Essay

The media, and Hollywood in particular, is one avenue in which the general public becomes familiar with the role of nurses. How does the media positively or negatively influence the public’s image of nursing? What other avenues may better educate the general public on the role and scope of nursing as well as the changing health care system?

When the show Nurse Jackie was first premiered I read that the New York State Nurses Association criticized the unethical behavior of the title character, and the damaging impression regarding nurses that such a portrayal could have on the public. They stated, “In the first episode, Nurse Jackie is introduced as a substance abuser who trades sex with a pharmacist for prescription drugs and has no qualms about repeatedly violating the nurses code of ethics”. Clearly NYSNA had a problem with this.

They were strongly against this show and the bad name it gave nurses. It portrayed nurses as being unstable with troubled lives and unethical. Grey’s Anatomy I thought was more about the doctors personal lives and not so much about the nurses and how they take care of the patients.

The doctors would be with the patients most of the time when in reality it’s the nurses that take care of them and also a lot of sexual behavior taking place in the medical facility which is not professional and prohibited. On a more positive note I loved the reality show NY Med which was filmed in NY Presbyterian Hospital on the upper east side in Manhattan. It was realistic and showed the life of nurses and doctors on an everyday basis.

It showed real events that take place in the ER and what the nurses actually do. I think this show portrayed a realistic view of what nurses do. Nurses work hard and have to constantly critically think and use their judgment. They work very long hours and sometimes forget to hydrate themselves like me! I think nurses don’t get enough credit sometimes because of some of these shows. Maybe one of the things we as nurses should do is advocate more for ourselves and each other as well and not just the patients.

Teaching and educating the public by holding seminars and conferences I think would be beneficial also. I was hoping NY Med was picked up for another season but I don’t think it was, nonetheless nurses need to promote health and awareness and maintain their professionalism. With the changes in the healthcare system we also need to make sure we are educated and up to par with all the newest nursing concepts and latest technology in order to present accurate information and be able to teach the public.

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