More Than Vitals


2nd International Scientific Research Conference, 2023

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The practice of Nursing is beyond what it is known for. 

To many, the major thing a nurse does is to check the vital signs of patients. 

The usual means to identify nurses was the white uniform. 

However, there is much more to the profession than “checking of vitals” and wearing a white uniform. 

A critical and careful review of the definitions that molded the profession will play a role in bringing back what has been misplaced.

“Nursing is the protection, promotion and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, alleviation of suffering through diagnosis and treatment of human response, and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, communities and populations”  

American Nurses Association

Nursing is that profession that takes responsibility for the continuous care of the injured, disabled, ill, and even the dying. More than caring for the sick, it is also that profession that sees to maintaining the health of individuals, families, and the community at large (Karen & Patricia, 2022).

“Nursing is the encompassing autonomous and collaborative care of individuals of all ages, families, groups and communities, sick or well in all settings; including the promotion of health, prevention of illness and care of ill, disabled and dying people”

International Council of Nursing

Nursing is solidly grounded in the human sciences and its focus is man as a living being and as qualitatively involved in health experiences (Rosemarie Rizzo Parse, 1981).

“Nursing is the act of utilizing the patient’s environment to assist him in his recovery. What nursing has to do is to put the patient in the best condition for nature to act upon him” 

Florence Nightingale

Nursing is described as an art and science that forms and structures the attitude, intellectual competencies, and technical skills of the individual nurse to have strong feelings and skills to render help to others (Faye Glenn Abdullah).

“A unique profession concerned with all of the variables affecting the individual’s response to stressors-Nursing” (Betty Neuman, 1982). “The direct service, goal directed and adaptable to the needs of the individual, family and community during health and illness-Nursing” (American Nursing Association).


“I like to think of us as the captain of the ship, because we are actually coordinating the care, all aspects from the specialties that see the patient, the primary care provider, physical therapy, and case management to achieve the best patient care”

Donna Glynn

Nurses are professionals who are actively involved in research, management, policy deliberations, and importantly patient advocacy in health care. 

Well-read nurses are capable of providing basic or primary health care and specialty services independently. Nurses’ care does not stop with the individual, the nurse cares for the individual, the family, and the community at large (Karen & Patricia, 2022). 

“The nurse is temporarily the consciousness of the unconscious, the love life of the suicidal, the leg of the amputee, the eyes of the newly blind, a means of locomotion for the infant, knowledge, and confidence of the young mother, the mouthpiece for those too weak or withdrawn to speak” 

Virginia Anderson

A nurse has a complex and creative function in offering limitless opportunities by applying skills based on physical, biological, and social sciences. 

The function of a nurse is thereby an independent one which is acting for the patient when he does not have the knowledge, physical strength, or will to act for himself if he were healthy. The priority of a nurse is the patients’ independence and meeting of their basic needs to enhance their progress during and after hospitalization (Angelo, 2022). 

“The unique function of the nurse is to assist the individual, sick or well, in the performance of those activities contributing to health or its recovery (or to peaceful death) that he would perform unaided if he had the necessary strength, will or knowledge”

Virginia Henderson

A professional nurse recognizes and understands the basic needs of the individual, sick or well, and knows how best the needs can be met (Esther Lucile Brown).


Angelo, G. (2022, March 2). Virginia Henderson: Nursing Need Theory. Retrieved from Nurseslabs:

Karen, B., Patricia, D. (2022, May 06). Nursing. Retrieved from Britannica:


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Location of the Conference

ADDRESS: Burlington Hall, 2nd floor, Lagos Chambers of Commerce & Industry (LCCI) Conference Exhibition Centre, 10 Dr. Nurudeen Olowopopo Way,
Besides Japaul House, Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos State.



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