Nursing the Nation: Building the Nurse Labor Force (Critical Issues in Health and Medicine) (Paperback)

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Modern health care cannot exist without professional nurses. Throughout the twentieth century, there was seldom a sustained period when the supply of nurses was equal to demand. Nursing the Nation offers a historical analysis of the relationship between the development of nurse employment arrangements with patients and institutions and the appearance of nurse shortages from 1890 to 1950. The response to nursing supply and demand problems by health care institutions and policy-making organizations failed to address nurse workforce issues adequately, and this failure resulted in, at times, profound and lengthy nurse shortages. Nurses also lost the ability to control their own destiny within health care institutions while nevertheless establishing themselves as the most critical part of health care provision today.

About the Author

JEAN C. WHELAN was an adjunct associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Whelan was named president of the American Association for the History of Nursing (AAHN) in 2012. She received the 2013 Legacy Award from Penn Nursing Alumni in 2014 and the Mary M. Roberts Award from the AAHN in 2015.

Praise For…

"We have needed this superb historical analysis for a very long time. Jean Whelan, analyzing perennial nursing shortages, explains why the American health care system seems to always be in crisis. Whelan's elegantly written book intertwines the experiences of individual nurses with the institutions that supported, transformed, and undermined their work, and the sexism and racism that thwarted their efforts. With its focus on nurses as workers not just professionals, Nursing the Nation should be read and taught widely to explain the origins of contemporary dilemmas in American health care."
— Susan M. Reverby

"This timely and important book fills a much needed gap in our understanding of how the modern nursing profession has developed. Whelan draws on extensive sources to demonstrate the ways that both race and gender have impacted the workforce and patient care. A must read."
— Kylie Smith

"Filled with 'aha! moments,' Nursing the Nation provides an interesting lens through which to explore and illuminate the early days of the nursing profession. In an illuminating discussion, Whelan traces historical roots explaining our relationships to each other as nurses, our students, our physician colleagues and the hospitals in which many of us work."
— Dr. Robert Atkins

Product Details
ISBN: 9780813585987
ISBN-10: 0813585988
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
Publication Date: February 12th, 2021
Pages: 236
Language: English
Series: Critical Issues in Health and Medicine

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