She did similar work in Nova Scotia, Scotland and many other nations around the world. “She did not take an assertive leadership role in her fledgling profession, but chose to dissent in a ‘silent’ manner from positions with which she disagreed, such as the American movement toward nursing registration. But her parents’ attempt to set Mary up for a similar life fell apart through the interventions of her first husband’s and children’s deaths, the infidelity of her second husband, and a divorce. When it became obvious to Mary Breckinridge that education and access could save lives, she got trained, trained others, saddled up her horse and provided access. By 1877, Richards already had completed nurses training at the New England Hospital for Women and Children in Boston, and spent a year as night superintendent at the Bellevue Hospital Training School in New York and 2.5 years as superintendent of the Massachusetts General Hospital training school. So an MGH committee member arranged a visit to England through a friend of Nightingale, and MGH sponsored Richards’ trip. Nursing is a job for those powered by passion and driven to do, and you might be the next great health care innovator armed with the humble power of pragmatism. Born: July 27, 1841; 1854: Linda cares for her mother until her death from tuberculosis The first nurses graduated in 1888. Another central element of your Concordia ABSN education, and the foundation of hospital care, is learning to chart and document all of your patient’s history, allergies, procedures, and medications. This administrative revolution created a system where diseases, allergies, and past procedures could be tracked, and doctors were able to see a long view of their patients’ histories. Her experiences with nursing her dying mother and her husband, who was wounded in the Civil War, inspired Richards to become a nurse. Linda Richards became actively involved in nursing organizations and can be regarded as one of the movers and shakers of the young profession. She and her nurses in training set about reforming the hospital with a standard sanitization process so that incoming patients were able to get clean equipment and bedding. Once the school was up and running, she accepted a position to establish a training school in Japan for the American Board of Missions. In 2001, Richards was inducted into New York's Women of Distinction program. Linda Richards: U.S. By way of introduction to the matron at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary in Scotland, Florence Nightingale described Linda Richards as a Boston lady with a high-spirited manner who set out for a year s experience abroad. 1840-1841: Returns to the US and begins touring the states doing inspections of the facilities available to the mentally ill, writing hair-raising reports of the inhumane conditions and presenting them to state legislatures in Maine, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Illinois, Louisiana and North Carolina, among others, leading to sweeping changes to these institutions. Linda Richards' Nursing Legacy Linda Richards spent her life improving her education and that of nurses’ training schools. Her taciturnity may have come from her Puritan New England traditions,” Baer wrote. During this time in Europe, she met other nurses who had midwife training and were able to help lower maternal death during childbirth, especially in rural areas. Dix was amazed that Britain was reforming its mental health facilities, moving them away from jail-like conditions to an inpatient care facility with gardens and functional therapies. She was one of the ones who tackled problems head on. Timeline of Linda Richards’ Life. July 27, 1841 - April 16, 1930 The recipient of the first diploma awarded by the nation’s first school of nursing, Linda Richards recognized the nation’s need for professionally-trained nurses and dedicated her life’s work toward the creation of training institutions to meet that need, in hospitals, homes and communities. “I have seen her, and have seldom seen anyone who struck me as so admirable,” Nightingale wrote in the introduction of Richards’ 1911 memoir. We have our 2016 GEM nursing excellence finalists! Debbie Ciesielka, DEd, ANP-BC, program director for the Clarion (Pa.) University Master of Science in Nursing program, wrote her thesis about Richards and thought much of Nightingale’s influence on Richards originated from the networking and friendships with people she met through Nightingale. The National Women’s Hall of Fame in Seneca Falls, N.Y., inducted Richards in 1994, citing how she brought “the work of nursing from menial chores to the great caregiving profession of today.”. America. Nightingale suggested Richards visit King’s College Hospital and the Royal Infirmary. In 1849, Pastor Theodore Fliedner of Germany traveled to America with four trained nurse-deaconesses and … Though these stories come from different eras and have vastly different endings, each of these nurses shared a common goal of improving the lives of as many patients as they could, often one patient at a time. After visiting the UK in the mid-19th century, Dix realized that America’s health care system was entirely inadequate for caring for our mentally ill patients. In 1872 Linda Richards graduated after one year of training rom the New England Hospital for Women,: Linda Richards is considered America's first trained nurse. The healer’s journey-Part 1: How nurses navigate the wake of a mass casualty shooting, IOM releases progress report on Future of Nursing 2020 goals, On the move with mHealth: Nurses develop mobile health tools, The climate connection: Nurses examine effects of climate change on public health. She started working as a nurse back when nursing education was virtually non-existent, but then enrolled as the first student in the first U.S. training program at New England Hospital for Women and Children, graduating a year later in 1873. By way of introduction to the matron at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary in Scotland, Florence Nightingale described Linda Richards as a Boston lady with a high-spirited manner who set out for a year’s experience abroad. Aside from notes doctors took for their own benefit, patients would essentially come in and be treated “blind” every time they entered the hospital, with no charting of previous hospital visits or procedures. Breckenridge was born in Memphis to a prominent family, enjoying all the spoils of a comfortable life, such as private education in Switzerland and frequent global travel. After getting midwife training in England (which was unavailable stateside), she returned to the US and founded the Kentucky Committee for Mothers and Babies, which later became the Frontier Nursing Service. Mortality drops from 42% to 2%, 1877: Nightingale trains American nurse Linda Edwards, 1907: Becomes the first woman to be awarded the, 1802-1839: Dix becomes a prominent organizer and reformer of failing schools, as well as a teacher and a private governess, 1840: Travels to Europe and observes the socio-political reforms taking place in British society and decides to create the same change in the US. However, this is a relatively new concept in the United States, a struggle resolved by the work of Dorothea Dix. A patient’s mental health can have a profound effect on their physical health, especially with sleep quality and healing time. She was not content to just train nurses but wanted to educate them. Richards recalled Nightingale offering advice, which she described as “absolutely invaluable.”. She suffered a severe stroke in 1923 and lived the remainder of her life at the New England Hospital for Women and Children where she had done her first training. Linda Richards completely reversed that idea and began to show just how important nurses were to the profession. 1865: Is named Superintendent of Army Nurses by the Union Army during the Civil War, is known for caring for wounded Confederate soldiers that their own army often left behind in lost battles. Linda Richards was its first graduate and thus is known as America’s first professionally trained nurse. Mary Todd Lincoln (1818-1882), the famous first lady, worked tirelessly as a volunteer nurse, tending to injured soldiers during the Civil War. Not all nursing pioneers make their mark in bedside care as Florence Nightingale did. One of Concordia’s core nursing education philosophies is holistic body, mind and spiritual patient care.