Florence Nightengale's influence on modern Medicine

Essay by Russell_RHigh School, 10th gradeA, October 2014

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Florence Nightingale was dedicated to service and tireless in her efforts to improve nursing. The circumstances of the Crimean war and the conditions of military medical care gave her challenges for requiring her best work. The high profile and importance of that war meant that her work was noted and appreciated at the highest levels as well as the public at large. She turned the fame, due to her efforts, to more gains for sanitation and nursing care throughout the world.

Early Life

Florence Nightingale was born on May 12, 1820, into a wealthy, upper class, well-connected British family at the Villa Colombaia, Florence, Italy, and was named after the city of her birth. Florence's older sister Frances Parthenope had similarly been named after her place of birth, Parthenopolis, a Greek settlement now part of the city of Naples. The family moved back to England in 1821, where Nightingale was brought up in the family's homes at Embley and Lea Hurst. Her parents were William Edward Nightingale, born William Edward Shore and Frances Nightingale née Smith. William's mother Mary née Evans was the niece of Peter Nightingale, under the terms of whose will, William inherited his estate at Lea Hurst in Derbyshire, and assumed the name and arms of Nightingale. Florence was educated mainly by her father.

Frances Nightingale raised her daughters to manage their homes and have a place in society. Florence, however, had an interest in helping people who where poor or sick. As she entered adulthood she showed less interest in marriage than in becoming a competent nurse. She was dismayed at the condition of the hospitals and nursing staff where the poor went when they were sick and often died. She served these people because she felt that God had called...