This book seeks to integrate the history of mental health nursing with the wider history of institutional and community care it develops new research questions by drawing together a concern with exploring the class gender skills and working conditions of practitioners with an assessment of the care regimes staff helped create and patients experiences of them. Nursing as we know is seen as only marginally interesting by history in general except for a few famous figures previously florence nightingale and subsequently mary seacole who in fact recently had to fight posthumously to keep her place within the english school curriculum1 either we have the history of medicine or the history of health care. Philadelphia hospital for the insane philadelphia pa c 1900 the history of psychiatric hospitals was once tied tightly to that of all american hospitals those who supported the creation of the first early eighteenth century public and private hospitals recognized that one important mission would be the care and treatment of those with severe symptoms of mental illnesses. Mental health nursing also called psychiatric nursing is among the newest of the recognized fields within the nursing profession while cases of possession and witchcraft date back from the beginning of written record cases of nurses caring for the mentally ill only date back a few centuries. Nursing in the 1800s a timeline and job description by mackenzie thompson life saver amc nightingale was the first nurse to care for her patients not just the sickness or injury he had many nurses follow in nightingales path working night shifts and making patient care the top priority
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