Racism in Nursing

Posted: October 17th, 2013

Racism in Nursing





Racism in Nursing

Kathleen Markey, the author of “Racism in nursing education: a reflective Journey” is a lecturer within the department of Nursing and midwifery in the university of Limerick in London, United Kingdom. She graduated from the University of Middlesex and went on to work in the National Health Service in United Kingdom. She worked within the areas of general surgery, high dependency and vascular surgery. In the year 2005, she finished a postgraduate course in nursing from Middlesex University and went on to work as a senior lecturer in the same university until 2007, when she commenced working as a lecturer in the University of Limerick. On the other hand, M. Deacon holds a PHD nursing. She has worked as a clinician, leader, researcher, educator, and manager within the nursing field since 1978. She is currently employed by the University of Chester as the professor in the field of continuing professional development within the Health and Social Care faculty. She has been associated with institutions, such as the MHNA and North-West CPNA, as a regional coordinator since the 1980s.

The British Journal of Nursing in which Markey’s article is published is one of the renown journals in nursing that started its publications in 1888 as “The Nursing Record” and gained its current name in 1902. Throughout this time, it has provided up to date articles about all areas of nursing. It is focused on nurses, who are responsible for writing its evidence-based articles. After the articles are written, they are peer reviewed by leading various authorities within the profession. The submitted articles go through a double-blind peer review to ensure originality and primacy of research. On the other hand, the Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing are among the renowned journals in nursing, only that it focuses on psychiatric and mental health nursing. All the articles published go through a peer review by professionals to ascertain the originality of work. The journal is known to provide information meant to the advancement of psychiatric and mental health care.

In the first article, “Racism in Nursing Education,” the author describes her personal and professional experience as a nurse lecturer after exploring on the issue of racism within the classroom. From her explorations, she finds that complexities of racism exist within the classroom ad poses a serious impact on learning of the students (Markey & Tilki, 2007). She also noted that lecturers had the difficulty of recognizing the racism as well as addressing it to make all students the same. She went ahead to note that organizational racism exists as well, posing a greater risk to the learning of these students (Markey & Tilki, 2007).

In the second article, “How should nurses deal with patients’ personal racism,” the author argues that racism is one of the global issues that are experienced by the whole world, and nurses are no exception (Deacon, 2011). She explores the issue within a mental hospital that is ethnographic. Some of the results indicated that nurses conceptualized that patient expression of racism is due to their mental health. In this regard, it was managed through direct engagement nursing, avoiding any difficulties for patients, as well as ensuring there are no extraordinary issues. From the exploration, the author cites that to manage patient racism a culture that involves everybody needs to be adopted (Deacon, 2011).

Both articles reckon that racism exists within the nursing field. However, there is a vast difference between the two settings under which the observation were carried out, where one happens within a learning institution while the other one is in a mental institution. The first article suggests that racism is a complex issue that is true and has its effects. She further puts across the difficulties and limitations of recognizing and addressing the issue. She gives a reflection of what she has observed but does not provide a comprehensive solution. On the other hand, the second article cites problems of racism and their complexities within mental institution, as well. However, a solution towards the end or conclusion is provided to help readers in dealing with racism.

Both of the articles are quite credible as peer reviewed articles on the issues of racism within nursing practice and education. Racism is a global issue experienced from anywhere in the world. However, within the nursing industry where nurses are supposed to take care of patients, receiving racism would make nurses uncomfortable while providing care. Nursing is quite a sensitive area that requires one to be very alert especially in a mental institution. Within the nursing education, such issues can be easier to deal with than at hospitals where people are quite diversified. Therefore, a culture of fighting racism has to be adopted, one that is embraced by all people within the hospitals as well as learning organizations to eliminate racism in the nursing field (Deacon, 2011).



Deacon, M. (2011). How should nurses deal with patients’ personal racism? Learning from practice. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, 18(6):493-500.

Markey K, & Tilki, M. (2007). Racism in nursing education: a reflective journey. British Journal of Nursing, 16(7):390-393.

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