Since Florence Nightingale and the birth of modern nursing, countless advances have shaped the nursing profession into what it is today. These are just a few of the major advancements that changed the nursing profession forever.
First issue of the American Journal of Nursing
As nursing began its journey toward receiving acknowledgement as a skilled profession and a science, the first issue of the American Journal of Nursing in 1900 was a monumental achievement.
Antibiotics and vaccines
The discovery of antibiotics and the implementation of effective vaccines throughout the 20th and 21st centuries drastically changed the way nurses not only treat patients, but the kinds of patients that come into their care.
BSN and APRN degrees
Nursing education began to change in a meaningful way in the 1960s, as baccalaureate and masters programs began to sprout up around the country. Today, nurses continue to gain ground in achieving higher education degrees, as the number of nurses with a bachelor’s degree or higher degree now represents 55% of the nursing population.
Although needleless connectors come with their own set of challenges, their implementation has been successful in reducing the incidence of needlestick injuries.
With automatic IV pumps, calculating drip rates by drops per minute is almost a thing of the past. But that’s not to say that drug administration is any easier. IV pumps require troubleshooting and extra care to ensure that drip rates are safe and appropriate. And the amount of drug knowledge needed has only become more complex.
Whether documenting, communicating or reviewing lab and test results, digital technology has drastically changed the way nurses do their jobs.
The use of ventilators led the way to entirely new nursing specialties and patient populations, including premature infants and critically ill patients.
There are so many advancements that shaped the nursing profession. What other advancements do you think effected change?