Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Is nursing a low-status profession?

  • Comments (16)

A news story last week highlighted that nurse leadership is ahead of the rest of the NHS in reflecting the gender of its workforce, but concerns remain that nursing’s perception as a “female” profession means it does not get the attention it deserves.

Speaking to Nursing Times Professor Jill Maben, director of the National Nursing Research Unit –based at King’s – said the predominantly female nature of the nursing workforce, combined with traditional notions of women’s place in society, meant the profession’s power did not reflect its size.

She told Nursing Times it made little difference whether a nursing director was male or female in terms of their influence.

“You may be a male director of nursing but your voice still may not be heard because it’s a low status profession,” she said. “It still seems very easy to sideline nursing and the nursing voice.”

For example, she highlighted that there was evidence of the impact of low nurse staffing levels dating back “years”. But it was only now, following the publication last week of NHS England medical director Sir Bruce Keogh’s review, that the issue appeared to be taken seriously at senior levels of the NHS.

Do you agree?

  • If nursing has a low professional status of nurses is it possible to change it?
  • Do nurses have less power because around 90% of the workforce are female?
  • Comments (16)

Readers' comments (16)

  • Eileen,

    Nurses need to find their voice and start using it.
    Nursing may be seen as low status inside the NHS as they always accept what is thrown at them. Nurses have all the responsibilty for their patients and they know what is happening but are powerless to change anything.

    Nurses can be very powerful indeed if they started organising and telling the public what is going on.

    Yes, they have the power to change their status. And they have always had this power. So much has been done to them over the years and they have been attacked again and again that they feel and have become powerless.

    Nurses must shake this and start campaigning and organising and get a voice. Only they can change their status. They should start rallies in Hyde Park, advertise what is actually happening to the NHS.

    Nurses should tell the public what they actually do and become their own advocate. They should tell the public through demostrations explaining what they do all around the country then they will get the respect they deserve.

    I think nurses are amazing


    LOVE
    PDaveANGEL

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Anonymous

    nurses are an extremely powerful force, unmatchable anywhere else in the NHS, with vast pooled resources of knowledge power, skills power, skilled leadership power and the sheer power of their number. they need to develop into a cohesive force and use all of this power to overcome all of the lesser powers which do not possess all of these attributes in the same unique combined force.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Anonymous

    Nurses are the backbone of the healthcare. Without nurses there would be no NHS, without nurses there would be no healthcare. Are these people blind, or are they simply intimidated by the sheer power of the nurses? If all nurses stand together and advocate for ourselves, like we do for others things would be totally different.

    We are dedicated to the care of others whilst letting those on the corridors of power wipe their feet on us. If half of us will be left without work what will happen to the people? I guess they do not care... Well I hope I die shortly after pension age, because I do not want to live in times where there won't be any nurses to look after me, because is not cost effective for the health trust.

    What will happen to the elderly with stroke, diabetes, incontinence, immobility? We need to stand up for ourselves.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Anonymous

    always there for people when they need it and even appreciated by some and trivialised or forgotten by those who don't!

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Yes to both. We can't ignore that because we are predominantly a female workforce we are discriminated against. It doesn't help that every year someone publishes the "worth of a housewife" and they always include "nurse" as one of the functions. Is there someone we can speak to about that?

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Anonymous

    Nursing is a low status profession.

    I don't understand all this talk of nurses being " an extremely powerful force". Really? Is that the same powerful force which tolerates low pay; enforced and extended working years for reduced pension deal and larger contributions; intolerable working conditions which put patients at grave risk and physically and emotionally harm the professionals; is all but mute in the face of such onslaught?

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • michael stone

    As anonymous has just said, some earlier posters are confusing 'is a powerful force' with 'should be a powerful force'.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Anonymous

    michael stone | 31-Jul-2013 11:55 am

    isn't any large mass of individuals a powerful force, potentially at least.

    fed up with your constant attempt at meaningless nit picking and trying to pick holes every time one tries to comment here!!!!!!!!!!! you are no more correct in your opinions than anybody else.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Anonymous

    The public know how hard we work, they can not believe what pressure we are under and how we keep going.
    The way we are treated is a farce, we take a 1% pay rise when everybody else makes a huge fuss We get increased amount of work loads in impossible conditions. We complain and say its unworkable but when we make a mistake because of this our own governing body throws you out to the wolves.
    We all pay £100 just so we can work in these conditions and rather support us and make a bigger case to look after us, they just cry we wanted more money from our members to keep the gravy train running.
    Its sad times ahead and I cant see it getting any better.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Anonymous

    michael stone | 31-Jul-2013 11:55 am

    Precisely.


    Anonymous | 31-Jul-2013 12:18 pm

    "you are no more correct in your opinions than anybody else."

    Neither are you. And your constant carping at another commentator is tiresome and not representative of all who read these threads.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Show 1020results per page

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment.

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.