Why Is Learning & Professional Development Important For Nurses?

Why Is Learning & Professional Development Important For Nurses?

Any career requires education. There are skills to every job regardless of how menial or prestigious, every job requires some form of acumen, or specialty that only training and experience in that specific area brings.

However, the human race has the incredible ability to optimize and constantly seek improvement in nearly all areas of our lives. It could be the draw to career excellence, or it could just be the natural working of our genetics to constantly seek efficiency, who knows? The point is that while people are working, other people are researching and learning and developing new knowledge, tools, and techniques.

This means that every industry is constantly evolving, and therefore every industry professional must evolve with them. Nowhere is this perhaps more important than in healthcare, and when we consider the duties of nurses, it is perhaps more important than ever for nurses to have access to continual education resources and professional development.

After all, would you want those out of touch with current medical science to be the ones in charge of caring for your loved one?

The Duties of Nurses

The very first responsibility of nurses is to make sure that they know what they’re doing. This may sound obvious as we stated earlier that every professional person needs to know what their job entails. However, due to the very life-and-death nature of nursing, this responsibility takes on a whole new level of importance. There are many education routes for nurses, ranging from a Certificate of Nursing Assistance to an online MSN-NE program (Masters in Nursing Education).

Being a nurse is one of the most intensive and personally involved jobs out there. The role demands that its workers be available almost all the time, as the people they’re looking after often require round-the-clock care or monitoring during their recovery. It isn’t rare for nurses to go without meals while caring for their patients, and they seldom get an extended break. Where doctors provide a diagnosis and prescribe the medicine and treatments in their care plan, it falls to nurses to maintain this care plan and keep it consistent.

As much as the task may sound like going down a list of clients and then just doing what it says on their chart, the job is rarely (if ever) that simple. Patients can be anti-social, and in the extreme even violently or sexually abusive. Some patients may have mental conditions that render them unaccepting or unwilling to comply with their treatment. Not to mention, some of the tasks that nurses have to do are sometimes just unpleasant. Nurses often have to wash patients, change dressings and clean infected wounds, draw blood, urine, and other body fluids, and help these patients go to the toilet and maintain their hygiene.

Nursing is not easy, and neither is it glamorous. It requires a special kind of soul to do the job and an exquisite one to do it with a kind heart, a lack of judgment, and a friendly smile. Especially considering that nurses frequently form a sort of friendship with long-term patients, often only to be exposed to that patient’s frequent suffering, and at worst, their eventual death. It is a physically and mentally harrowing job, and those who perform it deserve our thanks and recognition.

The Importance of Professional Development in Nursing

Like any industry sphere, nursing is an area that is constantly evolving. Part of keeping a job is keeping up with the developments in your sphere. For marketers, this means keeping abreast of all new research to do with algorithms and search engines. For architects, it’s about learning about design, new materials, and their aesthetic qualities. For nurses, this means learning about the latest in potentially life-saving research, technology, and practices.

There is also a huge legal component to the job. Medical assistance is potentially incredibly invasive and unpleasant for the patient. Sometimes people just don’t want a drug, therapy, or treatment that will potentially make them more comfortable or even cure them; and as odd as it may sound if that patient opts out of a treatment, that request has to be respected by the medical professionals attending to them.

Knowing instinctual information like this, as well as the latest in medical practices, etc, is all essential to nurses being able to offer the very best care.

Not only this but professional development allows nurses to take on hyper-specialized roles such as nurse educator, or certified nurse midwife. Filling these positions means that nurse positions can open up for new applicants, shoring up a younger, energized workforce of healthcare professionals.

Heart And Hard Work

It is a shame that nurses are quite undervalued in the current zeitgeist. The work and effort they put in to ensure that we and our loved ones get the level of care they require is nothing short of stunning. Most people aren’t built for life as a nurse, and very few manage to genuinely thrive in the position.

Learning and professional development are not only necessary to help nurses do their job properly, but it’s necessary to offer nurses the development they deserve to receive the highest level of job satisfaction from their occupation.