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The Hymn of Comfort in the World of Agony

The life manifests here in all its extreme soreness as well as softness.
Its transience becomes strident here, as the ambrosial drops of its vitality drips away through the leaking cauldron of time.
It is here, through the resonance of many heart-rending waves of crying, moaning, groaning, sighing and praying...
, you fathom the bottomless pit of human helplessness.
You continue to focus your ears for a kind word of hope; wait reflexively for a soft touch of solace.
Yes, here you discover the real school of spiritual wisdom.
Here you are under the tender care of an angel, who is superior to your own sister, superior to even your mother.
You address her as 'Sister'! You overlook that she deserves to be placed at a higher rostrum than that.
She nurses you in ways that even your mother or sister may find repulsive.
But, you reserve only contempt for her.
You look at her with disdain; raise your eyebrow and say, 'Nurse!' When did the society redraft its mindset about nursing? When the angel lost her saintly purity in the eyes of public? The nursing professionals of today carry a great legacy that during the early days, they had been curing many ailments through proper and dedicated tending of suffering patients.
At the time, when the majority of the modern medicines were not invented, Typhoid, Pneumonia, Chickenpox and other similar diseases were cured through nursing alone.
The staff nurses of those days used to perform the tasks of even the nursing assistants.
Their life itself was dedicated to nursing the sick.
Have the present generation of nurses, somehow lost such service outlook and readiness to forgo own comforts? Or has some kind of robotic tendency taken over the profession of late? During the days gone by, even in the recent past, many nurses entered the profession because of their deep crave to serve the sick and suffering; especially the military nurses.
They were compassionate and hard workers.
In a field of service where sacrifice is the hallmark, they experienced the salvation.
The Times when marriage was not allowed The girls opting for the nursing profession were not allowed even to marry in those days.
However, indirectly it enabled them to involve in their vocation with full-fledged dedication and total focus.
They were expected to work twenty-four hours.
Yet, they were happy to the take the call of this noble profession.
The truth nonetheless was that they had to face and suffer from many scandals and pointed fingers of suspicion from the society, the beneficiary of their sacrifices.
Time has changed and the nursing profession too has changed with it.
The nurses of today are organized and strong enough to fight for their rights.
The girls joining newly to nursing are viewing it mostly as a livelihood.
The artificial culture, a product of industrial age hastened the pace of life.
Newer diseases were appearing as the days go by.
Limitations of the available treatments and deficiency of the facilities had been adding to the load of the already overworked nurses.
One nurse for three patients is the accepted norm.
But today, situation in many hospitals is such that, each nurse has to deal with nearly twenty-four patients.
Even those who are performing their duties full-heartedly and with dedication have to face many bitter experiences today.
Until recently, the society used to look down on nurses.
There is now a considerable improvement for such attitude, still the members of this noble profession are not getting the recognition that they richly deserve.
If a patient, admitted to a hospital in a critical condition, is cured of his afflictions, we praise the doctor concerned, but ignore those nurses who have an equal or more share in the recovery of such recoveries.
However, if the patient succumbs to the disease, then we mindlessly blame them without any inhibition.
When there was no recognition or freedom for women in the society, the girls who had the courage to ignore the restrictions and enter the profession had to face many bad experiences.
Virginity Test About the nursing, the lifeline of modern medicine had developed a distorted perception probably around same time.
In a time when marriage, a fundamental human right, was denied to the nurses, they could not be blamed if some of them had crossed the border of society norms.
Like every one else, nurses also have emotions.
During those days, nurses were tested for pregnancy on a monthly frequency.
In case if any one were tested positive, she would have to leave the job.
For that matter, it is only recently that an inhuman virginity test was carried out on nurses in Raipur of Madhya Pradesh.
In private hospitals, most of the nurses do not have any sort of security.
Considering the special conditions of the present times, most of the girls are compelled to join these institutions only as an earning means to support their family.
In Other States They are also constrained to seek jobs in other states.
They trust all those helping hands reaching out to them in a far away place.
Such blind trust leads them to blatant exploitation by others.
If a girl trips and falls into a wrong track because of unfortunate circumstances, the society would see to it that she continues in the wrong path.
Those who are trapped in such dark corridors are mostly Malayalies.
It is not surprising as Kerala girls are the only ones most willing to go outside their state and work.
Superstitions The state of those who happen to work in the rural health centers is still worse.
I heard recently the story of the experience of a nurse described by her.
She had to work in a health center in Rajasthan.
She had to face many difficulties while working among the superstitious people there, who were ignorant of any hygienic living or unaware of the importance of healthy living.
She had sometimes to visit the patients' homes; that too, to interior places where no vehicles can go.
It really was quite adventurous; especially during nighttimes.
In such occasions, she had to cope with offensive and obscene behaviors from village heads or panchayat presidents, quite frequently.
If one reacts to such conducts, not only your job but your life also would be under serious threat.
The situation becomes terrible if the nurse is pretty looking.
These are the circumstances, when we read in our newspapers that 'A Malayali Nurse is killed.
' More Girls are Attracted Despite having many such negative sides, numerous girls enter the nursing profession today.
Because they find it, it is an effective means to go abroad.
Moreover, the job offers a normally reasonable income too.
This ancient hallowed service is roughly as old as the human history.
In the early days, the act of nursing used to come from the patient's own family.
When one is incapacitated due to old age or illness and he or she cannot look after oneself, he affectionate and the needful help that was available was the nursing, in those days.
The beginning of that original nursing filled with love and warmth was probably one's own mother.
As it developed and evolved, and it was shifted to the hospital premises, it became a profession.
Today, there are degree, diploma, and masters as well as M.
Phil and Ph.
D.
, in nursing.
The modern nursing is nearly a century old.
Military Nursing Service was started during the First World War.
The nursing selection in those days was mostly conducted from the members of Christian or Anglo-Indian communities.
Beside them, the widows and orphan-women were also showing interest in this profession.
Around this time started the nursing training for men.
Some of the rules and regulations formulated in that early period are still followed unaltered.
For example, the desirable basic qualification for a nursing tutor is B.
Sc.
Nursing.
However, the qualification of Tutor who comes to teach those who join for Three-Year General Nursing Course, after passing Pre-Degree (Second Group), is completing one and a half year duration Auxiliary Nursing and Midwifery Course followed by six month long supervisory course, after passing the tenth standard.
This is happening when holders of B.
Sc.
Nursing degree, which is the basic qualification for a tutor's post, are staying jobless.
According to the present rule, only after serving as a staff nurse for two years, a B.
Sc.
Nursing graduate can become a Tutor or join for Post Graduation.
While those who completed General Nursing can get immediate appointment through Employment Exchange, a B.
Sc.
Nursing graduate has to undergo the misery of waiting for the appointment order through Public Service Commission.
Furthermore, those who are appointed as tutors can have any promotion chances, only after passing M.
Sc.
Nursing.
When this is the actual position, Government does not allow deputation for any body to go for PG studies.
Those who wish to go for M.
Sc.
, have to take leave without salary and join the course.
They have to meet the expenses by themselves too.
It is very necessary to change such rules.
Previously, There was no degree or masters in Nursing.
The situation is different now.
Change the Education System It is essential to implement a well-planned education system with a proper framework in the field of nursing.
Newer medicines and improved methodologies are being introduced in the Medical Sciences, frequently.
Hence, we cannot emphasis the need for continuing education more.
It is a fact that refreshment courses are rarely conducted in this area.
Sweepers are Becoming Nurses Similarly, it is a bad precedent to promote unqualified people as nursing assistants.
If they have adequate service, provide them with upper grade, definitely not a nursing post.
It is a sad fact that many among them are illiterate and until then work as sweepers.
Moreover, they do not like to work under or obey the nurses and they prefer to follow their own 'nursing-service'.
But, the poor patients suffer for no fault of their own.
In the private sector, it is more a business than a service.
They select those who have completed merely eighth or tenth standard and hold neither a degree nor a diploma in nursing, to be appointed as Aided Nurses for doing the work of Staff Nurses.
Thus, they also become nurses without knowing the scientific side of the Medical Science.
The point is, they need to be paid much less than any qualified professional nurse! Aptitude Test In order to create a result-oriented health care system, it is essential to modify structurally the highly deficient nursing system of today.
It is vitally important in this field where human life is at stake, to have a system to select only those persons who are clearly interested to the field of nursing.
In reality, many choose B.
Sc.
Nursing when they do not succeed in the entrance examinations of M.
B.
B.
S.
, B.
D.
S.
or such courses.
That is probably the reason why nursing field is lacking the vitality.
Hence, an ideal solution is to select the candidates for the nursing courses through an aptitude test.
It is urgent and crucial that there must be complete rebuilding of the whole edifice of Nursing so that we can inject a new life and vivacity to this critical field.

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