Common Nursing Stereotypes
- Nurses are Students Who Failed Medical School
- Nursing is a Female Occupation
- Male Nurses are Feminine
- Nurses are Employed by Doctors
- Nurses Must be Either Angelic or Evil
Graduates who have earned a nursing degree quickly learn that there are many stereotypes pertaining to nursing. Fortunately, none of these misconceptions are true. And while there is a multitude of these misleading stereotypes, five of the most common misconceptions are discussed below.
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1. Nurses are Students Who Failed Medical School
Students who have earned nursing degrees often become all-too-familiar with the nursing stereotype that nurses are simply students who could not complete medical school. This could not be further from the truth, and in fact, most aspiring nurses have solid and clear-cut goals in their path to becoming nursing professionals. These are simply medical professionals who chose a career path separate from that required to become a medical doctor.
2. Nursing is a Female Occupation
Some of the most common stereotypes about nursing involve gender, and perhaps the most widely known stereotype is that nursing is a female occupation. While nurses were predominantly female throughout history, more and more males are choosing to earn a nursing degree today. The American Nurses Association began accepting male nurses in the year 1930, and according to statistics provided by the United States Census Bureau, about 9.6 percent of all nurses in 2014 were males.
3. Male Nurses are Feminine
Another typical stereotype pertaining to nursing is that all male nurses are overly feminine (and thus, must be gay). This stereotype comes from the misconception described above that the nursing profession is for females only. But again, this could not be further from the truth today. Male nurses are simply students who chose career paths apart from those necessary to become medical doctors. While their exact reasons for choosing the nursing profession may vary, common reasons men choose nursing include comfortable salaries, job security, and personal satisfaction.
4. Nurses are Employed by Doctors
While many people often think that nurses are employed by doctors, this is not always the case. Although some private practice physicians do, indeed, employ nurses, the majority of nurses are employed by the administrative teams in the facilities where they choose to work. These nurses do not work for doctors: rather, they work alongside them providing care to patients that visit the facilities where they work. The types of care provided by doctors and nurses are distinct and are both essential to patient care.
5. Nurses Must be Either Angelic or Evil
Nurses must be either angelic or evil is yet another nursing stereotype shared by many people today. Just as in any other profession, nurses bring their own individual personalities to their jobs and may have both “on” and “off” days when they are not themselves. Although there very well may be some nurses who are highly angelic or those who are overly evil, most nurses are professionals who take their jobs seriously and fall somewhere in between.
Graduates who have earned a nursing degree often find that there are many misconceptions pertaining to the nursing profession. Five of the most common stereotypes about nursing are described above along with the reasoning behind each.