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Nursing: The most trustworthy profession

Written by

Date posted

31 May, 2022

Nurses have always enjoyed a great deal of admiration and respect from the public for the hard and crucial work they do. The feelings of appreciation and value towards nursing staff extend beyond British society, across the whole of the world.

In America, according to Gallup’s annual Most Honest and Ethical Professions Pool, nurses were placed at the top of the most trusted professionals for the 20th consecutive year. In Australia, nurses ranked second on the survey of the most trustworthy professions organised by Reader’s Digest, as the first and third places were occupied by doctors and paramedics. Worldwide, people had tremendous respect for the role nurses play in society.

In the UK, we find a similar trend regarding nursing professionals. In a poll organised by YouGov, consisting of 1,805 adults, nurses were chosen as the profession which makes the biggest contribution to society in Britain. The list also included five other well-appreciated roles: doctors, teachers, scientists and engineers.

This result isn’t much of a surprise. Organised in the UK in 1983, the Ipsos Veracity Index poll on trust found similar results over the past few years. Nursing has been voted the most trustworthy in Britain every single year since the profession was introduced as a voting option in 2016.

Inspiring a generation

Nurses have been at the forefront of the pandemic. Whether in hospitals, care settings or other private organisations, nurses have had a massive impact in the fight against the COVID-19 outbreak. In spite of dealing with many difficulties such as shortages, sickness, very long working hours as well as increasing emotional pressures, nurses have stood their ground firmly and have in many ways sacrificed themselves to help others in need.

Their actions have not gone unnoticed. According to UCAS, the decision to study nursing has increased by 38% amongst 18-year-olds since 2019. As a reference point to approximate the magnitude of this decision, the UK’s 18-year-old population has only increased by 2% during the same period of time.

Similarities can also be seen when looking at older age group segments. Applications choosing nursing as their first option of study from people over the age of 21 have increased by 34% since 2019.

A continuous trend

In spite of studies and surveys finding similar results amongst the nursing workforce, from fatigue and burnout to massive shortages, these findings have not become a deterrent. The latest data for this year shows that applications to study nursing have slightly decreased over the past couple of months, however, the overall number is still up compared to pre-pandemic levels according to the Nursing Times.

Whilst fluctuations could be a matter of concern, seeing that a large number of young people desire to pursue this career path is great. With the government making plans to re-build the nursing workforce and address the growing number of shortages, current nursing professionals might have offered them a big helping hand.

Considering the way in which current nurses have faced adversity and pressures throughout the pandemic, this could have very well inspired future generations of teenagers to pursue the most trusted and the most society contributing profession in the UK. 

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