From the early Christian period until the beginning of the 19th century nursing as a profession was neither clearly defined nor properly organized.
It was Florence Nightingale who changed the public perception and attitude towards nursing with her extraordinary commitment and in the process laid the foundation of nursing as a profession with purpose & direction.
Today the nurse with her skills and knowledge has a very important position in the health care organization. Hospital nursing has became specialized with distinctive branches of critical care, neonatal and child care, cardiac care, burns, oncology, urology and nurses with special skills in operation theatre etc. However her traditional role as a person who cares for the sick, injured and disabled has assumed greater importance with her even higher aim of promoting health and preventing illness.