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Is the title Ward sister outdated?

  • Comments (30)

Is the title Ward sister outdated?

An article on our website about ward sisters controlling budgets resulted in an interesting debate about whether the title ward sister is old fashioned and offensive to men who are nurses. Do you agree? What is an acceptable alternative?

 

  • Comments (30)

Readers' comments (30)

  • Anonymous

    i thought the male equivalent was called charge nurse?

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  • Anonymous

    must date from the days when nuns ran hospitals and seems inappropriate in the 21st century.

    nurses in France were 'soeurs' or 'ma soeur' which is not used anymore in lay hospitals. a nurses are now addressed as 'Madame' (Mademoiselle is no longer PC, except for very young women) which can be followed by their name, or Christian names may be used, which seems more appropriate and more respectful than the way they are often addressed in the UK as nurse or sister which gives the feeling of being treated as an object, a servant or some religious relic from the past.

    In Germany the title 'Schwester' was phased out quite recently and the term 'Krankenschwester' has been replaced by 'Pflegefachfrau or Pflegefachmann' (female or male care professional). Here again staff are more appropriately addressed by their names, although sometimes patients will call out 'Fraulein'.

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  • Anonymous

    yes, it's out-dated. Ward Manager is more appropriate, got to call them something. Would you call a male nurse 'ward brother'?

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  • Yes it's outdated. I think Ward manager or just Charge nurse would be more up to date.

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  • Anonymous

    Not really (unless they're a man). I think its down to personal choice - some female managers and charge nurses prefer to be called Sister because a lot of older patients identify with the title better and sometimes it sounds more traditional and unpretentious. Unqualified staff can call themselves Healthcare Assistants, Carers, Nursing Auxiliaries or Clinical Support Workers... if it all means the same thing you might as well chose which title you use! x

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  • Thats fine, but what about the Band 6 junior sisters post then? I am Band 6 with a band 7 manager who works across 2 sites 8 miles apart, I am second in charge,title has been changed for me to Nurse Team Leader, but then there are the other 3 Band 6's, what do they get tagged as?
    I agree too, that the older people associate "sister" with someone senior and the male nurses were always charge nurses.

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  • Anonymous

    To be honest think its a waste of time and effort to concentrate on this particular subject when there are so many other varying topics that challenge nursing today ..Just my opinion.

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  • Anonymous

    Anon 10.05

    I agree with you. I have a name and a title of my civil status as well as a given name and I expect people to use these just as I treat others with respect and courtesy and use theirs. I do not wish to be called sister, nurse, matron (which I soon put a stop to in my last post as I was only the deputy anyway with a ghastly uniform to match), or any other name of an object! It is time nursing dropped this military service image and people were more human and civil to each other!

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  • An interesting debate, does being called sister instantly mean you are old fashioned? I think not, I always introduce myself to patients using my name, not my title.

    However my job title is that of Senior Charge Nurse, and it says as much on my name badge, not because its modern, but because i am male, and my female colleagues are Senior Sisters. We still all introduce ourselves by our first names, if you have to hide behind your job title are you happy / secure in what you are doing?

    My leadership and seniority is not enforced with my title and adherence to a military type rank structure. My leadership and the fact that others follow me comes from my clinical skills and knowledge, along with the clinical example i show on a daily basis.

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  • Anonymous

    We call them 'blueys'.

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