Males make up around 10% of the nursing workforce in the UK and USA. Nurses are typically regarded as female and males in nursing can find themselves referred to by the public and patients as 'male nurses' or 'murse' to distinguish them from other nurses.


Men In Nursing - Men in Nursing

During plagues that swept through Europe, male nurses were primary caregivers. In the 3rd century, men in the Parabolani created a hospital and provided nursing care. The Codex Theodosianus of 416 (xvi, 2, 42) restricted the enrollment on male nurses in Alexandria to 500.

Reasons for low representation

Men In Nursing - Daily SON

There are several reasons suggested for a low uptake of nursing by males: stereotypes of nursing, low pay, nursing job titles such as Sister and Matron, and the perception that male nurses will have difficulty in the workplace carrying out their duties.

Campaigns to increase representation

Men In Nursing - Men In Nursing at UCLA

Unlike the campaigns and groups set up to increase and promote women's opportunities within medicine and surgery there have been no comparable campaigns to increase the number of males within nursing.

Whilst there have been no campaigns to increase the number of male nurses in the profession, public perception of men working as nurses is changing, which is seeing larger numbers of men apply for the role.

Careers of Male Nurses

Men In Nursing - Are You Man Enough to Be a Nurse?” Campaign Posters | The Fifth Floor

Despite there being low numbers of male nurses, there is no indication that they suffer in their career and anecdotal evidence suggests that male nurses can be fast tracked.

United Kingdom

The Society of Registered Male Nurses RCN history merges with the RCN in 1941.

After the second world war, large numbers of male nurses move into the work force as they were demobilised after the war and had gained medical experience join the profession.

In 1951 male nurses joined the main nursing register.

In 2004 the percentage of male nurses was 10.63% this had increased very slightly to 10.69% in 2008.

In 2008 there are 132 male midwives on the RCN nursing register.

United States

In 2008, of the 3,063,163 licensed registered nurses in the United States only 6.6% of were men. Men also make up only 13% of all new nursing students.

Nursing schools for men were common in the United States until the early 1900, more than half of those offering paid nursing services to the ill and injured were men. Yet by 1930, men constituted fewer than 1% of RNs in the United States. As they found other, more lucrative occupations, they left nursing behind.

The American Assembly For Men in Nursing was founded in 1971. The purpose of AAMN is to provide a framework for nurses as a group to meet, discuss, and influence factors which affect men as nurses.

In Mississippi University for Women v. Hogan, 458 U.S. 718 (1982), the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5â€"4 that Mississippi University for Women's single sex admissions policy for its nursing school violated the Fourteenth Amendment's equal protection clause. Justice Sandra Day O'Connor wrote the landmark opinion.

Male Nurses in popular culture

  • Joey Henderson (Shortland Street)
  • Jack McFarland (Will & Grace)
  • Peter Petrelli (Heroes)
  • Charlie Fairhead (Casualty)
  • Paul Flowers (Scrubs)
  • Gaylord "Greg" Focker (Meet the Parents, Meet the Fockers)
  • Rory Williams (Doctor Who)

Notable Men in Nursing

  • Walt Whitman the American poet, essayist and journalist volunteered as a nurse during the American Civil War.
  • William Pooley: volunteer nurse who has helped in the Ebola crisis
  • Tom Ahrens: an American nurse, researcher and educator at Barnes-Jewish Hospital specializing in critical care nursing
  • Justus A. Akinsanya
  • Richard Angelo
  • Jonathan Asbridge
  • Richard Carmona
  • George Castledine
  • Luther Christman
  • Daniel Conahan
  • Charles Cullen
  • Zane van Reenen Joynt
  • Keith Paora Curry
  • James Derham
  • Robert Ellis (United States Army nurse)
  • Benjamin Geen
  • Paul Genesse
  • Edson Izidoro Guimarães
  • Billy Halop
  • Carl O. Helvie
  • Hu Wanlin
  • John of God
  • Matt Keeslar
  • Camillus de Lellis
  • Jim Lendall
  • Stephan Letter
  • Ted Maher
  • Orville Lynn Majors
  • Daisuke Mori
  • Abasse Ndione
  • Colin Norris
  • Phillipe Nover
  • José Olallo
  • Tom Quinn (nurse)
  • John D. Thompson
  • Will Wikle
  • Tom Willmott
  • Jonathan Asbridge
  • Jason Beckford-Ball
  • Sidney Browne
  • Anthony J. Carr
  • Peter Carter (nurse)
  • George Castledine
  • Kevin Gournay
  • Gary Jones (nurse)
  • Derek Longmuir
  • Stephen Moss (nurse)
  • Ian Norman
  • Malcolm Rae
  • Robert Tiffany
  • Peter Watt
  • Richard Wells (nurse)

See also

  • Gender role
  • Nurse stereotypes
  • Women in medicine
  • History of Medicine
  • Nurse-client relationship
  • Transcultural nursing


External links

  • http://aamn.org/
  • http://www.rnmen.com/
  • http://www.minoritynurse.com/men-nursing
  • http://www.malenursemagazine.com

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