Reciting nurse's pledge question

  1. 3
    I was just told in class we'd be reciting the nurse's pledge before each class and at graduation. My issue with this is the first line.. has anyone else come across this issue? It's not a religious or privately funded school. I don't belong to a faith so pledging to a god makes me uncomfortable. How would you handle it?

    Here is the pledge:

    Before God and those assembled here, I solemnly pledge:
    To adhere to the code of ethics of the nursing profession.
    To cooperate faithfully with the other members of the nursing team and to carry out faithfully and to the best of my ability the instructions of the physician or the nurse who may be assigned to supervise my work.
    I will not do anything evil or malicious, and I will not knowingly give any harmful drug or assist in malpractice.
    I will not reveal any confidential information that may come to my knowledge in the course of my work.
    And I pledge myself to do all in my power to raise the standards and the prestige of the practical nursing.
    May my life be devoted to service, and to the high ideals of the nursing profession.
    grownuprosie, Blanca R, and Joe V like this.
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  4. 36 Comments so far...

  5. 3
    I have the opposite problem, and I'm also at a state run facility with no faith/religion. Ours read as some nebulous statement about "I pledge myself to All Higher Beings." Well the bottom line is that I do not pledge myself to ALL HIGHER BEINGS. I pledge myself to the One, the true God, maker of all things. There are other higher beings out there, and I'm not going to get into it but there is not a chance I'd do anything even close to pledging myself to them. So I just said it the my way. That's what holds meaning for me, that's what directs me, that's where I have accountability in my life.
  6. 3
    Just leave out the word God. Instead, state, " Before those assembled here, I solemnly pledge:".

    If you instructors have an issue with you not saying the word "God" then explain to them how you feel.
    Esme12, llg, and JerseyGirl6 like this.
  7. 2
    I just wouldn't say two words in the first sentence. *shrug* Do you ever have to say this out loud by yourself? If not, who will know?
    llg and SE_BSN_RN like this.
  8. 0
    Right. You could always just (silently pause) when the word is said, and continue on with the rest of the pledge. That way you'll still be in rhythm with the rest of the class.
  9. 4
    I agree...you can just look slow on the uptake and come in at "and.". Personally, pledging to something I don't think exists doesn't bother me. It's just meaningless, like an atheist saying "I swear to god!"
  10. 1
    I just don't want to draw attention to myself in class. I personally don't think a public, non-religion affiliated school should assume every student attending is comfortable reciting a religious part to a pledge when we are also learning about how to respect diversity and beliefs with our patients
    grownuprosie likes this.
  11. 0
    Quote from VictoriaFL84
    I just don't want to draw attention to myself in class. I personally don't think a public, non-religion affiliated school should assume every student attending is comfortable reciting a religious part to a pledge when we are also learning about how to respect diversity and beliefs with our patients
    Personally, I don't see how leaving a word out or even pausing would be cause for alarm or bring attention to yourself. I do understand your point, I really do. You mentioned that it is a public school and non-religious and you stated that saying the word "God" makes you feel uncomfortable and you don't believe in a religion or a faith. You don't need to say it if you don't want to. I am of the understanding that nurses accept/tolerate diversity, cultures, religions, creeds, faiths, or a lack thereof etc., which differ from their own. It is not a nurse's job perse to be biased or cast judgement on others. If anything, I see objectivity and an understanding of others more key, than being prejudice or biased.

    I think schools generalize in the fact that everyone does believe in some higher being, because most do in some form or way. Which is why the word is included. But, I doubt an instructor would have a serious issue with the lack of the word being said or not.
  12. 3
    Just don't say the word. You have to remember this pledge was written a long time ago. I went to a public community non-religious school and we recited the Nightingale Pledge. No one ever said anything about it. You are going to encounter many people with many different religious backgrounds. Are you going to refuse to care for them because they believe in God? The pledge is important to those who work hard and understand the meaning behind it. Some schools are not reciting it, and I think that's sad. The whole foundation of nursing in a few paragraphs now seems insignificant.

    The Hippocrate's Oath for physicians starts out with: "I swear by Apollo, the healer, Asclepius, Hygieia, and Panacea, and I take to witness all the gods, all the goddesses, to keep according to my ability and my judgment, the following Oath and agreement:.....

    So, it could be worse, I suppose!
    ashleyisawesome, Esme12, and barbyann like this.
  13. 4
    Victoria, the opening of the pledge is completely inappropriate, and given then your studying to work as a practitioner in a field where concern for others is of utmost importance, the administrators of your school seem to be oblivious to the feeling of their own students. It would be somewhat understandable if it were 1950. In 2012 it shows a shocking obtuseness, at best.

    There is no way I would let this pass without comment to the dean. It is possible, though hard to believe, that no one ever mentioned it to them. They may have been going through the motions for many years.

    Anyone who wants to acknowledge, pray to, or pledge their allegiance to a god or any other entity is completely free to do so, on their own, and not as as a group ceremony in your college.
    ORnurseCT, Luckyyou, grownuprosie, and 1 other like this.


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