Many nurses throughout history contributed to the profession by establishing precedence in healthcare where they found a need.
These nurses had an immense influence on the patients in their care. They also laid the foundations to improve the profession by fighting for greater efficiency.
Dorothea Dix (1802-1887)
Dix gained notoriety as the fearless nurse who fought for better care of the mentally ill. Her mission began when she spent Sundays providing classes to female inmates at the East Cambridge Jail.
Dix immediately noticed the conditions endured by the mentally disabled. She brought the problems she encountered to the court system, and won battles to improved the conditions in almshouses and jails.
She continued to strive to help the mentally handicapped and took her fight to Europe. In 1881, she established the Trenton State Hospital in New Jersey, where she worked until her death in 1887.
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