Busting the myths on male nursing – Part 2

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Myth #3

Men who take up nursing are looking for an ‘easy way out’

A student learning how to take a patient's blood pressure in a local Tanzanian hospital. Fact

 Nursing is not an easy profession, whether you are male or female. All nurses need to go through a rigorous curriculum before they can even qualify to practice. All nurses, male and female must also have exceptional science and maths skills as well as outstanding critical thinking, technical and communication skills. In addition, all nurses face the same challenging and heart-wrenching scenarios during the course of a workday, coupled with tough nights on the floor.

 

The truth is nobody looking for an ‘easy way out’ would choose a career in nursing. There are several other career paths that are easier and pay better. There are plenty of arguments that support the fact that men who take up nursing only do because of other motivating factors. 

 

Myth #4

 Men are not compassionate enough for this profession

Fact

 This is much like saying that women cannot join the armed forces. That myth has long been busted and over the past few years, so has this one. Men have proven time and time again that they are as compassionate and caring as their female counterparts, not just as nurses but in just about any field. Men who choose a career in nursing do so for many of the same reasons that women do. They feel they have a calling and they have a strong desire to help people and make a difference. In a poll where male nurses were asked what drew them to this particular career and what made them stay, the overwhelming majority of male nurses replied that it was the immense satisfaction they got from helping and healing people. It is becoming increasingly clear that this myth has no solid ground anymore. 

 

Myth #5

The challenges or perks in male nursing are negligible as compared to several other career paths

Fact

 No nurse would ever describe his or her job as ‘unchallenging’. Neither would they say it was without its perks. While a male nurse may not earn as much as a doctor or other management level professionals, the salaries are still nothing to scoff at especially for nurses who have undergone specialty training. Moreover, there are several other variables such as the diversity of the job, higher flexibility in scheduling as well as the larger range of workplace options that play a more significant role in choosing a career in nursing. 

 

A few final thoughts 

Today, healthcare organisations that are hiring nurses to fill various vacancies give little or no importance to the sex of the person they hire. Instead, flexibility and adaptability along with proficiency in a particular specialty, the desire to be an active member of the healthcare team and the desire to help fellow team members and patients are top priorities for healthcare establishments looking to hire new nurses as members of their team. Add to it the growing global shortage of nursing professionals, there’s no better time for men to enter this field. 

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