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Caring Matters Most: The Ethical Significance of Nursing

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’I would recommend this book to anyone who is already a registered nurse, regardless of their seniority and those who are considering entering the nursing profession.’

Title: Caring Matters Most: The Ethical Significance of Nursing

Author: Mark Lazenby

Publisher: Oxford 

Reviewer: Andrew Southgate, Senior Lecturer and School of Nursing Lead for Internationalisation

What was it like?

This book is published in a time when nurses are feeling disenfranchised and undervalued; when the divisions in society between those who have those have not are, arguably growing. Nurses are leaving the profession and vacancies are hard to fill…so why would you want to be a nurse? This book may well help answer that question. Writing from the heart, Mark explores what can be argued to be the essence of what nurses do and why we decided to become nurses. The book moves away from regarding ethics as a way to manage conflict and difficult situations towards the term illuminating how it underpins the value base that we, as nurses, have to support people in our care.

What were the highlights?

The nursing profession has struggled for many years to determine “what is the value that nurses bring to care settings”? Narratives from lived experience are used through the book to explore themes such as “Beauty”, “Imagination” and “Presence”. These themes are discussed in ways that could help us identify and clarify exactly what it is that nurses contribute to those we interact with and care for. It also provides a guide as to how we can work towards social justice and inclusion for all. The chapters are thought provoking and the content provides opportunities for refection. This is supported by the discussion questions and exercises at the end of the book. These excellent resources can be used for individual refection and to stimulate group discussion. As a result, the book provides a useful resource for academics who are developing “flipped classroom” activities and modules. The book does not use illustrations or images; however, the language used is accessible and each chapter is easy to read. There is also an extensive bibliography and references at the end for each chapter.

Who should read it?

I would recommend this book to anyone who is already a registered nurse, regardless of their seniority and those who are considering entering the nursing profession.

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