How did the nursing profession come about

History of nursing

The history of nursing is synonymous with caring for the sick. It was and is closely linked to the history of medicine. Likewise, theology and social sciences have had a major impact on the care of the sick. Originally, the idea of ‚Äč‚Äčnursing arose out of the need to be there for the weaker and sick from one's own family or clan. As care also extended to people outside of one's own family and community, the thought of charity grew and professional care developed. Special care professions such as child nursing, elderly care or psychiatric care did not emerge until the middle of the 20th century.
Supporting, helping and caring for the sick, the injured and the weak is based on a motivation that runs through all religions and societies. As fossil finds show, people treated the sick, splinted fractures or repaired the consequences of accidents even in pre-Christian times. Even operations on the skull have been sufficiently proven historically. It was hidden in history who carried out the care. It is believed that women were responsible for looking after the elderly, the weak and children.
In the Hammurabi legal code in the 2nd century BC First legal regulations for the medical profession on. At the same time, the oldest written records of medicine and therapeutic treatments can be found here. It is not known whether activities other than caring for the family took place at that time. On the other hand, we certainly know that midwives and wet nurses already existed back then. In ancient Egypt Ebers was found in the papyrus, written around 1550 BC. Chr., The first evidence of the division of the medical profession into different specialist areas. Back then, the sick were treated in temples, where priestesses and temple women also took on care tasks alongside the treating doctors.
In the Middle Ages, medicine was offered early on at European universities. The care was based more and more on the Christian aspect of charity and spread particularly in the monasteries and religious orders. When the plague and leprosy ravaged Europe, special hospitals emerged in which the Franciscans, Augustinians, Johanniter or other orders turned to nursing.


With the advancement of medical history, the professional nursing profession became more urgent. In the 18th and 19th centuries, the hospitals, which all those in need could visit, gradually became the hospitals in today's sense, which are reserved for pure medical care and nursing.
The first nursing school on German soil was opened in Mannheim in 1781. Nursing has moved from being a Christian service to a secular profession. The English nurse Florence Nightingale played a major role in the reformation of nursing and published a new training model, the Nightingale system.
The time of National Socialism also brought the nursing profession into focus. As part of the health education at that time, the job description of the community nurse was created. The care of war casualties was the central theme of worldwide nursing at the time. After this second World War, it was necessary to reposition nursing again. A nursing school corresponding to international standards was established in Heidelberg, in which a three-year training course had to be completed. In the 1960s and 1970s in particular, forward-looking theories emerged, such as the care theory according to Henderson in 1966 or the RLT model from 1976, which pointed the way to the development of German care theories.
Nursing science courses have been available at German universities since 1980s be occupied. At the same time, a nursing emergency arose, which one tried to bridge with nursing assistants. This came at the expense of the quality of care.
In the last few decades, specialist training courses for nurses have been established. These include the hygiene specialist or the specialist nurse in the operation service. An individual study of nursing science could in 1999 to be introduced in Vienna.
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