Men and Nursing .. Good History

Students Male Students


hi ..

the first nursing school in the world was started in india in about 250 bc. only men were considered "pure" enough to become nurses. the charaka (vol i, section xv) states these men should be, "of good behavior, distinguished for purity, possessed of cleverness and skill, imbued with kindness, skilled in every service a patient may require, competent to cook food, skilled in bathing and washing the patient, rubbing and massaging the limbs, lifting and assisting him to walk about, well skilled in making and cleansing of beds, readying the patient and skillful in waiting upon one that is ailing and never unwilling to do anything that may be ordered."

source: [color=#244478]first school

during the byzantine empire nursing was a separate occupation practiced primarily by men. in the new testament, the good samaritan paid the innkeeper to provide care for an injured man. no one thought it odd that a man should by paid to provide nursing care. story of the good samaritan found at: luke 10: 35-36

source: [color=#244478]biblical times

in every plague that swept europe men risked their lives to provide nursing care. a group of men, the parabolani, in 300 ad started a hospital and provided nursing care during the black plague epidemic.

source: [color=#244478]parabolani

two hundred years later st. benedict founded the benedictine nursing order. st. alexis was a fifth century nurse. the alexian brothers were organized in the 1300's to provide nursing care for the victims of the black death. today both groups continue in their work.

military, religious and lay orders of men continued to provide nursing care throughout the middle ages. some of the most famous of these were the knights hospitalers, the teutonic knights, the tertiaries, the knights of st. lazarus, the order of the holy spirit, and the hospital brothers of st. anthony.

two patron saints of nurses stem from this period. st. john of god and st. camillus de lellis both started out as soldiers, and later turned to nursing. st camillus started the sign of the red cross which is still used today, and developed the first ambulance service.

source: [color=#244478]early orders

fray (friar) juan de mena was the first american nurse

seventy years before the pilgrims landed on plymouth rock, fray (friar) juan de mena was shipwrecked off the south texas coast. he is the first identified nurse in what was to become the united states. two lay brothers, friar juan de mena and friar marcos de mena, were badly wounded...

friar juan de mena received an arrow in the back; and with other spaniards, he died after going a little more than a quarter of a league. from the time this friar donned the habit in santo domingo of mexico, he lived an exemplary life. among his virtues, especially noteworthy was the humble charity with which he tended the sick. he was mexico's nurse, esteemed and praised for his diligence until the time he was deceived, along with others, into leaving his province for spain and was led to his death.

source: [color=#244478]first american nurse

john ciudad (1495 -1550) founded the order of the brothers of st. john of god or the brothers of mercy in (1538). he opened a hospital in grenada and asked a group of friends to assist in providing care to the mentally ill, homeless, crippled, derelicts, and abandoned children. men of this order also visited the sick in their homes.

st. camillus de lellis (1550 -1614) founded the nursing order of ministers of the sick. men of this order cared for the dying, people stricken with the plague, and alcoholics. st. camillus opened a hospital for alcoholics in germany.

source: [color=#244478]catholic encyclopedia: st. camillus de lellis

james derham was an african american man who worked as a nurse in new orleans in 1783. he was able to save enough money to buy his freedom from slavery. he later studied medicine and became a respected physician in philadelphia and the first african american physician in the united states.

source: [color=#244478]james derman

in 1808, lazaro orranti and martin ortega were two men employed as the nurses at a hospital in san antonio. the hospital employed only men as nurses.

a century later a sign above the door to the san antonio hospital nurses quarters stated "entrance to no mans land."

source: [color=#244478]texas hospitals

in the middle 1800's england became embroiled in the crimean war, and the united states fought the civil war. during the civil war both sides had military men serving as nurses although we only hear about the union volunteers, who were predominately female. the confederate army identified thirty men per regiment to care for the wounded. the union also had men in the military serving as nurses. men, including walt whitman, served as volunteers.

source: [color=#244478]civil & crimean wars

walt whitman (1819-1892), poet and writer, served as a volunteer hospital nurse in washington, dc during the civil war. he recorded his experiences in a collection of poems called "drumtaps" and in his diary, "specimen days and collect".


prior to the civil war both male and female slaves were identified as "nurses."

victoria clayton describes "old joe" who was "my husband's nurse in infancy" being entrusted with the care of the plantation, while the white men of the plantation were fighting in the civil war.

source: [color=#244478]sld015

the wars decimated the male population of both england and the united states. more men died in the civil war than in any other war in us history. following the civil war the united states went through a tremendous expansionist period. it was the time of manifest destiny. besides the men who died in the war, many male survivors went west.

source: [color=#244478]after war

in 1863, women physicians founded new england hospital for women and children to provide medical and nursing education for women.

three years later the alexian brothers opened up their first hospital in this country. they educated men as nurses.

source: [color=#244478]first us schools

on march 10, 1890 the first nursing school in texas started. it was proclaimed in the galveston daily news as "a new field in which educated women may find a means of support"

there were nursing schools for men. the mills school for nursing and st. vincent's hospital school for men were started in new york in 1888.

source: [color=#244478]nursing schools

as the turn of the century drew near, female nurses started to organize. in 1894, the superintendents of female nursing schools gathered in new york for their first annual meeting. the nurses associated alumnae (note female form of alumnus) of u. s. and canada had their first annual meeting in 1898. delegates to the 1900 convention contained only one married woman and no men. the nurses associated alumnae became the american nurses association in 1917, and men were excluded until 1930.

source: [color=#244478]organzing

one of the early accomplishments of the female nursing organizations was to exclude men from military nursing. in 1901 the army nurse corp was formed and only women could serve as nurses. the u.s. military nursing changed from being predominately male to being exclusively female.

source: [color=#244478]army nurse corps

it was not until after the korean war that men were again permitted to serve as nurses in the military. during the intervening decades men who were registered nurses enlisted and were drafted, but were not assigned as nurses.

source: [color=#244478]men back in military

once men were again permitted into military nursing, the numbers also increased in civilian nursing. nursing schools, which had denied admission to men, began to admit them. gradually the numbers of men in nursing increased from less than one per cent in 1966 (ana, research and statistics department) to the 1996 five per cent (division of nursing.bhpr/hrsa/us dhhs).

source: [color=#244478]increase in men

today men are resuming their historical role as caring, nurturing nurses, just as some women are resuming their roles as physicians. after a century as a predominately female profession nursing is changing again.

source: [color=#244478]today

one group working to support and promote men in american nursing is the american assembly for men in nursing.

source: [color=#244478]aamn page

men in american nursing history - this information was taken from professional nursing practice, 4th ed. by blais, hayes, kozier & erb. [color=#244478]men in american nursing history (last updated 11.5.97.)

source: [color=#244478]history - men in nursing

that's good history to men in nursing job

good luck for all ..

I'm just happy to be here!

This topic is now closed to further replies.

By using the site, you agree with our Policies. X