Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay

Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay

The most important part of every health system is the workforce. Many health care providers, who have quite a mixed variety of specific responsibilities, are involved in the health care process. Nurses are the largest and one of the most important groups of these specialists. Some people consider the nursing profession to be science, while others call it art. However, it is necessary to emphasize that although nursing as science seems more obvious, the nursing profession has both sides. Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay

Art and Science

Firstly, to describe these two different sides of nursing, it is important to understand the art and science and people’s attitude towards these two conceptions. Humanity lives in a time of rapid technological progress. People are surrounding themselves with modern gadgets, which were invented to make life easier. Scientific discoveries are unbelievable. However, the contribution of art to contemporary life is not inferior to the contribution of science. The question of what is more important science or art is still opened and under discussion.

The first thing to be considered is the practical side of art and science without going into the subject of nursing. It is believed that the inventions and discoveries of scientists are more significant than the works of artists. The invention of such vital things as electricity, machines, planes, and many others has significantly influenced the human lifestyle. The life of modern people directly depends on them. Nevertheless, society benefits from the works of artists too. Art is an essential part of human existence that enables people to understand their inner world. However, most people would agree that the contribution of art to life is less useful than the contribution of science. Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay

Apart from this, society has always been interested in science more than in art. People of different times paid a lot of attention to the works of scientists taking art for granted. The reason has something to do with the fact that an average individual just has not got the elementary and basic knowledge about the essence of art, and due to it, he or she is not able to value its meaning. Nevertheless, it cannot be denied that art and science are inseparable, and they influence each other. It is not possible to observe and discover the world without taking art into account.

The Essence of Nursing

To understand how nursing refers to science and art, it is essential to analyze the nursing profession. The American Nurses Association (n.d.) describes nursing as “the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, facilitation of healing, alleviation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response, and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, communities, and populations” (para. 1). Nurses can be divided into two main groups by their competencies: indirect and direct care providers. Although both these groups are essential in providing quality medical services, the goal of direct care providers is to treat patients. In contrast, indirect nursing care is aimed at organizational issues such as health care management, reducing medical costs, and improving the patient experience. Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay

 It can be said that modern nursing was founded due to Florence Nightingale, a social reformer and philosopher of nursing. Nightingale dedicated her career and life to helping the world. Throughout her career, she fought to improve public health service policy. Beck, Dossey, & Rushton (2012) state that “she advocated for better conditions for women, children and the poor and hungry, including better education for marginalized people, and she sought to improve the environment to sustain health” (para. 12). Florence Nightingale significantly affected the health care system in the 19th and 20th centuries. What is more, Nightingale was the first person who underlined two sides of nursing: art and science.Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay
Nursing as a Science

That science is fundamental in the nursing profession. The science of nursing is more obvious and noticeable than art. According to Norman and Ryrie (2013), the science of nursing relates to a person’s biological profile. The scientific side of nursing refers to evidence-based practice. As scientists, a nurse has to be aware of different illnesses, diseases, and infections, how they spread, what medications to use to treat them, and many other things. Having appropriate and relevant knowledge is a must for nurses. In other words, the scientific side of nursing provides the delivery of patient care.


Another significant part of the science of nursing is research. Medical scientists are focused on the investigation of a mixed variety of illnesses. What is more, every day, they try to discover new medicines to treat such dangerous diseases as cancer, AIDS, and others. Dunphy, Winland-Brown, Porter, & Thomas (2015) stress that scientific research that is important for building future development plays a vital role in nursing. Nurses are the first person with whom patients contact, so one of the nurses’ main responsibilities is collection and recording reliable, complete, and understandable information. It is essential to develop an evidence base of accurate data to help medical associations and organizations do research and implement necessary changes following the provided information. Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay

Nursing as an Art

There are some similarities between general art and the art of nursing. It can be said that the majority of people tend to undervalue and neglect both of them. Most people associate the nursing profession with science ignoring its art side. Although nursing as an art is not so clear as nursing as a science, it cannot be denied that art is an essential part of the nursing profession. Robinson (2014) emphasizes that “the art of nursing is the perception of patient needs based on their expressed behaviors” (p. 44). The art of nursing is not based on systematic evidence practice. On the contrary, it is concentrated on feelings. The art of nursing does not imply knowing; it is more about emotions.Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay

The art side of nursing refers to communication. Ramezani, Ahmadi, Mohammadi, & Kazemnejad (2014) underline that such personal qualities as compassion, sympathy, attentiveness, and diligence are necessary for the nursing profession and communication with patients particular. These qualities determine the essence of the art of nursing. Nurses have to be enthusiastic about their work, and they have to acquire and develop their communication skills to create an appropriate environment for patients. There is no doubt that a patient who is surrounded by love and doctors and nurses who care about him is going to recover quicker than a patient who lacks this positive relationship.

Apart from this, the treatment of patients is not the only thing to be considered concerning the art issue. Also, nurses should be involved in promotional activities that are considered to be an art to a great extent. Nurses are to promote not only healthy lifestyles, but also they have to concentrate on the policy-making processes to grab the public’s attention to some pressing problems of today’s world such as child mortality, maternal health, and the spread of dangerous diseases.Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay

What Is More Important, Science or Art?

All in all, there are some close relationships between the science and art of nursing, and it is difficult to say what is more important. To effectively treat patients, nurses have to consider their practice both as a science and an art. The best nurses are those who can combine these two aspects. However, it is important to emphasize that there is no nursing without its scientific side, but there can be nursing that does not take art into account. Unfortunately, the second option is quite common nowadays.Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay


To sum up, the question of what is more important art or science is still under discussion, and there cannot be an obvious answer. The same holds for nursing. Florence Nightingale was the first person who underlined the importance of two aspects of nursing: art and science. While science is the basis of nursing that refers to the evidence-based practice, the art side of nursing relates to communication with patients. However, most people believe that the contribution of science is more necessary than the practical side of art. Although it cannot be denied that good nursing implies the combination of art and science, it is quite common when the art of nursing is ignored.Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay


Beck, D. M., Dossey, B., & Rushton, C. H. (2012). Florence Nightingale: Connecting her legacy with local-to-global health today. Web.

Dunphy, L. M., Winland-Brown, J., Porter, B., & Thomas, D. (2015). Primary care: Art and science of advanced practice nursing. Philadelphia, PA: FA Davis.

Norman, I., & Ryrie, I. (2013). The art and science of mental health nursing: Principles and practice: A textbook of principles and practice. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.

Robinson S.G. (2014). True presence: Practicing the art of nursing. Nursing, 44(4), 44-45.

Ramezani, M., Ahmadi, F., Mohammadi, E., & Kazemnejad, A. (2014). Spiritual care in nursing: A concept analysis. International Nursing Review, 61(2), 211-219. Art and Science Relationship in Nursing Essay

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