Janice G. Smith, RNC, BSN
Staff Nurse, Nursery Beginning in Nursing School
Beginning in nursing school, there were many technical aspects of nursing to be mastered, which are of course necessary in order to function as a hospital nurse. However, I view nursing as both a science and an art, and during my years as a Saint Vincent nurse, I have learned much from observing the way my co-workers provide care to our patients.
From my early experiences working on 6 East ( a mix of oncology, medical, and day surgery patients while I was there) “on the hill,” to my present position in the Center for Women and Infants, I have sought to integrate the compassionate care I see provided each day into my practice of nursing. I am reminded that the effort it takes to spend time explaining a procedure, or to resolve a patient complaint, or to prepare a patient for discharge, is an aspect of that care that is often neglected in today’s fast-paced, outcome-oriented clinical environment.
It is at times difficult to remain focused on the “art” in nursing, but it is nevertheless a goal well worth striving for as we interact with patients, physicians, and visitors alike. Putting my thoughts in writing has also reminded me that one of the reasons I chose to become a nurse was to care for others, and I realize that I am glad I made that choice.