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In 1887, Nurses Had To Follow These 9 Rules. Just Wait Until You See The Last Rule…

By Karly Carpena
November 11, 2015

Nurses not only take care of their patients physically, but they can make a lasting impression on someone’s life! But the profession of nursing has changed over the years as hospitals and healthcare have evolved. The following job description was given to floor nurses by a hospital in 1887:

In addition to caring for your 50 patients, each nurse will follow these regulations:

1. Daily sweep and mop the floors of your ward, dust the patient’s furniture and window sills.


2. Maintain an even temperature in your ward by bringing a scuttle of coal for the day’s business.


3. Light is important to observe the patient’s condition. Therefore, each day fill kerosene lamps, clean chimneys and trim wicks. Wash the windows once a week.


4. The nurse’s notes are important in aiding the physician’s work. Make your pens carefully; you may whittle nibs to your individual taste.


5. Each nurse on day duty will report every day at 7 a.m. and leave at 8 p.m. except on the Sabbath on which day you will be off from 12 noon to 2 p.m.


6. Graduate nurses in good standing with the director of nurses will be given an evening off each week for courting purposes or two evenings a week if you go regularly to church.


7. Each nurse should lay aside from each pay day a goodly sum of her earning for her benefits during her declining years so that she will not become a burden. For example, if you earn $30 a month you should set aside $15.


8. Any nurse who smokes, uses liquor in any form, gets her hair done at a beauty shop, or frequents dance halls will give the director of nurses good reason to suspect her worth, intentions and integrity.


9. The nurse who performs her labors and serves her patients and doctors faithfully and without fault for a period of five years will be given an increase by the hospital administration of five cents per day.

We just want to personally thank all the nurses for all the hard work they do!