I’m A Nurse, Not A Caregiver: Defining the Difference

Amanda J. Anderson

20140721-130147-46907897.jpg Much of a nurse’s shift is spent in analysis of constant patient assessment; a skill that is specific to nursing but difficult to define. Photo by fineartamerica.com

I seem to be getting hung up on the linguistics of nursing lately. Last week, I wrote a post about the importance of titling oneself at the bedside. And yesterday, I ran across a piece in my Sunday paper that made me think pretty seriously about the nursing profession’s relationship with the word “caregiver.”

Nurses are often called caregivers. In fact, after posting my titling piece to Twitter, I struck up a bit of a conversation with some other nurse bloggers about the best way to introduce ourselves at the bedside; most of our brainstorming centered around the action of care.

“I’ll be taking care of you,” was filed straight into the garbage bin, and, “Hi, I’m your nurse, I’ll be caring for…

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