(A) study on the development of nursing education in Korea
The advent of 'nurse', in the true sense of the meaning, dates back to the year 1884, when a coup detat was attempted by the progressive minority against the dominent Conservatives; and when for the first time the Western wisdom of medical science began to shed its light upon the Korean soil. The modern system of nursing
can be said to find its origin in those days in and around the year 1884, when the Christian missionaries with nurses came to Korea to do medical services and they found it necessary, especially when there was an epidemic prevailing, to give some
training of nursing to the native Christians who volunteered to work for the patients in the hospitals.
Those missionary nurses, a helping hand for a doctor and for the patients, began to do their duty, while training the nurses in the Severance Hospital in the lead and other hospitals in the main cities of Korea.
We can trace cut another origin of nursing education.
Initiated by the Attached School of Nursing to the Korea Hospital, extablished in 1907 and renamed as the Government-General Hospital in 1910, and beginning with an institution installed in 1928 (sponsered by Japanese Government) for raising
nurses, attached to the Medical School of Keijo Imperial University, many other institutions for nurses' training were founded by the railway Hospital, the Province Hospital, the Red-Cross Hospital and other well-known hospitals.
In the former case, that is, in the Christian hospitals, the nurses were educated on the American curriculum of higher level and their acquired knowledge was in an American style as well as their uniform; while in the latter their knowldge and dress were all in the Japanese style.
There were many differences between the former nurses and the latter, but the primary distinction was that the former were more highly educated in accordance with the American system than the latter, and that the former were equal in status to the doctors, not as an aid to a doctor but a collaborator, while the latter were subject to a doctor, existing not for patients but for a doctor.
Moreover it was quite natural in the situation of those days that the nurses turned out from the Christian institutions began to organize many associations of nurses and they went abroad for further research.
It was not until August 15, 1945 that the glimpse of a radical development of nursing education was to be seen.
There-fore the nurses' training, at most, had been dependent upon the attached institutions to some medical schools or to some public hospitals, but since 1945 it was turned over by the high schools of nursing and technical high school for nurses. Again it was elevated to a junior college and at long last to college level, requiring a longer period of study and higher qualification of the applicants. Such a collage-level department of nursing was installed in Ehwa Women's University, Yonsei University, Seoul National University and Catholic Medical College.
Though in the beginning stage the nursing education was mostly on the charge of the professors who were medical doctors or extra-nurses, now 20 years later from 1945, those who majored in nursing at home or abroad replaced to them.
The curriculums in each school are unified in level and contents, though there are slight differences.
It is a proof of outstanding progress in teaching nurses as a professional vocation that the graduates from the department of nursing are now not only in charge of nursing educations but also of school administration.
More then anything else, we can see a prominent improvement in the relation between a doctor and a nurse, for they have become equal in status, and one of them can by no means be superior to the other.
One more aspect known only after 1945 is the system of nurse officer. The Korean nurses are proud that they could not merely attend on the wounded soldiers in the Army Hospital, but they could go to the front, putting into practice the message from Nightingale, the Mother of Nurses.
As mentioned above, a remarkable progress in nursing education has been made, though there have been many unsatisfactory sides in it. To compensate for the unsatisfactory sides and to improve the qualification the nurses attained, the Government began to impose the National Board Examination on them, abolishing in
1962 the system in which every nurse who was through the required course was automatically awarded the license as a nurse and as a midwife as well. It deserves a mentioning here that the Council for Nursing Education came into birth in the Ministry of Education and regulations were made public on December 23, 1965.
Lastly the following suggestions are to be suggested:
1. A stronger administrative support, personal and material, is badly needed from the Council for Nursing Education.
2. Teachers in this fields should be allowed to keep on their research abroad, or at least awarded a more effective and systematic education at home.
3. More equipments and teachers are needed to carry on more effective experiments in accordance with theory.
The writer reached the following conclusion:
1. The nursing education in Korea began when the foreign missionary nurses came to Korea.
2. Up till August 15, 1945, the American system of nursing education and that of Japanese coexisted in parallel.
3. In 1929, for the first time, the Korean nurses went abroad with a view to further research.
4. After the Independence Day from Japan, the system of nursing education was unified in American style, marking the nursing education and its administrative system more effective.
5. The nurse professors came to light.
6. Before the Independence Day the missionary nurses form America were in charge of comparatively high level of nursing education and its administration.
7. After August 15, 1945, the Korean nurse professors came to exercise their authority in the nursing administration.
8. The nursing for the wounded soldiers made a remarkable development by the Korean War.
9. To improve the qualification of nurses, the Government imposed the National Board Examination.
10. The nurse and the midwife came to be separated.
11. A stronger administrative support for the nursing education was attained by the Council for Nursing Education installed in the Ministry of Education.