People identify each other and themselves based on their social positions in a society. Some jobs and titles offer a higher status than others. For example, society categorizes jobs like doctors and lawyers with a higher social class than waiters and waitresses. Their positions are viewed upon as more prestigious, honorable, and powerful. Some positions, like nursing, can acquire a higher social standing overtime.

In the New York Times article “When the Nurse wants to be Called ‘Doctor’ ”, Gardener Harris writes, “Doctorates are popping up all over the health professions, and the result is a quiet battle over not only the title “doctor,” but also the money, power and prestige that often comes with it” (Harris, Gardiner “When the Nurse Wants to be Called ‘Doctor’” New York Times. Web. October 1, 2001). As more nurses earn their doctorates they also earn their right to the title “Doctor”.

With this advancement comes new questions and difficulties: What happens to society’s view on physicians and nurses? What does this mean for the doctors? Who is really treating the patient? Will the title hold less authority or will the nurses obtain more? Although nurses will soon be required to attain their doctorate instead of just a degree there has been no significant differences between those who have a doctorate and those who have a degree. The difference is in the title of a doctor. Doctors have more influence, and are looked upon as leaders while nurses are the assistants. Physicians see this as a threat and a greed for power and esteem, but the nurses look at it as an opportunity for progression. On the other end of the spectrum, patients and society are faced with confusion. If the doctors are the nurses, do they have enough credentials to diagnose, prescribe, and treat?

The training, requirements, and challenges that physicians need to surpass in order to become doctors are far more difficult than those of nurses. I think that physicians should maintain their leadership and importance over nurses because their training provides them with more knowledge and experience. Nurses should not be able to hold the title of a doctor because it would greatly confuse patients since it goes against society’s definition of what a doctor is. In today’s economy it would be more helpful if nurses and physicians could work equally because more patients would be treated, however I strongly feel that more mistakes would be made. The cautiousness and tediousness of the job of a doctor would turn into carelessness and faultiness.


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