“We Silence Our Profession When We Fail to Identify Ourselves as Nurses” (Viewpoint, August 2012) struck a cord. I'm often frustrated when I hear my colleagues introduce themselves using only their first names and don't articulate what kind of nurse they are.
By using our whole names, we are making ourselves accountable to the patient and the community in which we practice. Moreover, we establish that we are professionals. My taxes aren't completed by “Kendra, Accountant,” and bridges aren't planned by “Sally, Engineer.” Why should nurses be privy to patients’ most sacred information and be able to inject them with potentially lethal substances if we don't feel they should know our full names and credentials?
When we clearly articulate which profession we belong to, we also tie ourselves to a scope of practice, a code of ethics, and, most importantly, a regulatory body. Because RNs, LPNs, and RPNs in Canada have differing scopes, standards, and regulators, I believe it's imperative that we clearly identify ourselves. The noun “nurse” deserves an adjective, such as “registered” or “practical.”
Braden Davie, BSN, RN
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada