Victorian London - Professions and Trades - Service Industry / General  - Nurses

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DN150 : One Hundred and Fifty Years of District Nursing 

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Nurses. —
ADDLESTONE NURSING INSTITUTION, Alexandra-road, Addlestone, Surrey near the station. — Six nurses. Terms from £1 1s. to £2 2s. per week, according to the cases. Infectious and insane cases always  £2 2s. Travelling expenses to and from,the institution, extra.
AESCULAPIAN MEDICAL & SURGICAL HOME, 10, Bentinck-street, Cavendish - square. — Number of nurses: indoor, 5; out-door, 25. Terms: resident patients from £4  4s. per week, with their own medical man (which the director prefers). This institution affords the most suitable accommodation to ladies and gentlemen requiring medical and surgical care, combined with the advantages of trained nurses, or trained gentlewomen to act as nurse and amanuensis, appropriate apartments, &
ASSOCIATION OF TRAINED NURSES AND MALE ATTENDANTS, 37, Davies-st, Berkeley square, W.—No fixed number of nurses. Terms vary according to nurse and case. Monthly nurses are never sent to infectious or contagious disorders. Nurses in this association have their own homes, and the bulk of their earnings; many of them are widows.
HOME AND SISTERHOOD OF ST. JOHN THE EVANGELIST. Branch Home: Maternity Home and Training School, 7, Ashburnham-road, Chelsea, S.W. Superintendent, the Lady Superior of St. John’s Home.—Twelve beds. Admission free. Applicants must be poor, respectable, and married women. This home was opened in August, 1877, for the reception of poor married women, and for the training of monthly nurses, It is under the charge of a qualified sister and nurses of St. John’s Home. Monthly nurses supplied.
INSTITUTION FOR NURSES FOR NERVOUS AND MENTAL DISORDERS, PARALYSIS, AND EPILEPSY, 1, King-street, Park-st, Grosvenor. square W. —Number of nurses unlimited. Terms: £1 2s., £1 6s., £1 11s, per week. Payment to be every six weeks, when the fifth week is expired. No nurses to be sent home on Sunday; if sent out Sunday, their week ends Saturday. Founded on the rules of Mrs. Fry’s Nursing Sisters’ Institution. Ten per cent. on the payments is devoted to superannuation fund. Persons desirous of being engaged as nurses must be Protestants, and willing to attend the Church of England services. The strictest enquiries will be made as to their previous moral character, and no one need apply who is unwilling to undertake the menial offices that may be required in a sick room, Candidates are received on probation or for training for not less a period than three months; they pay an entrance fee of £2, which is returned to them if they engage with the institution, but not otherwise. Probationers, after three months’ training in an asylum, or, if already trained for mental nursing, a trial in the home and at cases, are engaged as nurses. They then promise to serve for three years, which engagement they cannot break, except on giving three months’ notice to the superintendent, and on paying a fine of £6. This engagement is renewable, where the testimonials and conduct have been satisfactory, every three years for a like period. They are allowed an annual stipend of £20, which is raised to £23 after three years’ service; £26 after six years’ service; ~£29 after nine years’ service; supplied with an appropriate dress, and maintained in the home provided for them during the intervals of their engagement. At the end of twelve years they have a superannuation pension of £20 a year when the fund allows. The nurses are engaged from the age of twenty-five; if younger, a reduction is made in their salaries. Families sending for nurses are required, before the expiration of six weeks, when the payment becomes due, to renew their application for the nurse to continue in attendance. The payments for nurses are to be sent every six weeks to the superintendent; but strangers are expected to apply at the end of the first month for permission for a nurse to remain, and to send their six weeks’ payment if they wish her to do so. The nurses are sent out at regular charges, which cannot be lowered. As the institution is supported by the nurses’ earnings, it would be impossible to do charity at their expense. Persons employing nurses are at liberty to exchange them, if unsuited in any way to the case of the invalid; but attendants are not allowed to leave their charge without permission. When a nurse is discharged from an infectious case, fifteen shillings must be paid to her for lodging, as for the safety of others she cannot return home until danger of infection has ceased. The nurses are not permitted to receive mourning or presents (except a book as a trifling remembrance), directly or indirectly, from the patients or families on whom they attend; those who wish to express gratitude for benefits received can best do so by contributing to the superannuation fund. The nurses of this institution are only engaged to attend on ladies.
LONDON ASSOCIATION OF NURSES, 62, New Bond-street; branch office, 86, Kennington-park. road. — Number of nurses, 200. Terms, from £1 1s. to £4 4s. per week. Medical nurses, from £1 1s. to £2 2s. per week; mental nurses, from £1 1s. to £3 3s. per week; monthly nurses, prom £4 4s. to £21 per month; surgical nurses and male attendants, from £2 2s. to £3 3s. per week ; fever and smallpox nurses, £1 1s. to £3 3s. per week. In this association the nurses are not paid by salary, but receive their earnings. Firth’s Home Hospitals for the Well-to-do—In connection with the Association of Nurses there are “Home Hospitals,” where patients can be received under the care of their own physicians, each patient being provided with a separate room. Hospital No. 1: For medical and surgical non-infectious cases. Hospital No. 2: A country house, with large garden, for convalescents. Hospital No. 3 : For the reception of convalescents from infectious diseases. Hospital No. 4 : For the cure of inebriates. Terms, from £4 4s. to £12 12s. per week, according to nursing and accommodation required. Address of hospitals given only to patients or their friends. Male attendants and medical rubbers always in readiness. There is no danger of infection being carried by nurses from this association, as those nurses whose specialty it is to attend infectious cases are never in contact with those who do not. Nurses are supplied to the poor as well as to the rich. The advantages to nurses of this association are, that through it they hear of more regular work than if not thus registered, and that the earnings belong to themselves. The terms upon which the hospital-trained nurses work vary;  some are willing to accept 15s. per week, others are paid from £1 1s. to £4 4s. per week. Wet nurses are carefully selected, and super vision is given to the persons and places where their infants are placed. Any form of application, per letter or telegram, stating the class of nurse required, will receive attention, day or night.
METROPOLITAN AND NATIONAL NURSING ASSOCIATION FOR PROVIDING TRAINED NURSES FOR THE SICK POOR, the Superintendent-General, 23, Bloomsbury-square.—Terms, gratis. Where artisans or others are able, they contribute small sums weekly. No cases are nursed where the patient is able to board and pay a resident nurse. There is no rule with respect to creed. Any lady can attend any church or chapel that she pleases. Ladies when trained live in a district home under a Lady superintendent trained like themselves. These homes are arranged and furnished suitably for gentlewomen, and ladies are at liberty—when the work for the day is done—to dine out, or to spend the evening as they please. Ladies are required to dress for the evening, as they would naturally do in their own homes. The following are the principal regulations: Nurse candidates will be selected by the sup.gen., and received into the central home of the association, where they will reside for a month on trial. If considered suitable, the candidate will pass on from the central home to the hospital training school where they will be admitted as a probationer, and receive a year’s training. On the satisfactory completion of the hospital course the probationer will return to the central home for further training in the practice of district nursing, combined with technical class instruction, for a period of three months, and her training will usually then be considered to be completed. The probationer who has completed her training to the satisfaction of the committee will be placed upon the staff of the association. Nurses so trained will be expected to continue in the service of the association for a period of three years, dating from the completion of their training, and if they wish to terminate their engagement, either at the end of that period or subsequently, will be required to give three months notice in writing. The nurse’s engagement may be terminated on the part of the association at any time by three months notice. Nurse candidates, upon admission to the home, will pay 5s, to cover the expense of board, lodging, and washing, during their month’s trial. No claim will be admitted for the return of any portion of this sum in the event of their not remaining the whole time. Probationers will pay, for maintenance during their year’s training in the hospital training school, £30, by two instalments: viz. £15 upon admission to the hospital school, and £15 at the expiration of six months after admission. The about payment for maintenance in the hospital school is based upon an arrangement made with the committee of the Nightingale Fund, and applies only to St. Thomas’s Hospital. The probationer will be provided with full board, including the usual extras, an allowance of 1s. 6d. a week for washing, a uniform dress, a separate furnished bedroom, and a sitting-room in common. The instruction being provided at the expense of the Nightingale Fund will not be charged for, except in the event of withdrawal or dismissal. Probationers, upon re-entry into the home, will pay in advance £14; viz. £9 for maintenance during their further training (whether for three months or longer), and £5 as a fee towards the expenses of class instruction, books, &c. Probationers who satisfy the committee that they are unable to make the above payments will be allowed to postpone the payment of the whole or a portion until after the completion of their training, upon their entering into an undertaking to repay the amount by quarterly instalments, to be deducted from their salary, but so that if the engagement ceases from any cause, then the whole sum or the balance then due shall become payable at once. The total payments being then £44, the repayments shall be made as follows: £14 during the first year, £15 during the second and £15 during the third. Nurses on the staff of the association will receive a salary, payable quarterly, and commencing on their return to the central home from the hospital, of £35 for the first year, £38 for the second year, and so on increasing £3 every year until it reaches £50. The annual increase will depend upon the duties being satisfactorily performed. Nurses will, as a rule, reside in one of the homes of the association, and they will be provided with full board, including the usual extras; an allowance of 2s, 5d. a week for washing, and uniform dress; a separate bedroom furnished; and sitting and dining-rooms in common. Nurses will be required to wear, when on duty, the uniform dress adopted by the association. The association reserves the right of requiring the nurse to subscribe to a pension fund, the annual payment to any such fund not to exceed one-sixth of the nurse’s salary.
NORTHERN BRANCH OF THE METROPOLITAN AND NATIONAL NURSING ASSOCIATION FOR PROVIDING TRAINED NURSES FOR THE SICK POOR IN THEIR OWN HOMES, 413, Holloway-road, London, N—Four nurses maximum number for this branch. Terms: Free to the sick poor in their own homes. Cases of another class taken on payment. No recommendation needed. Cases are seen by request of the patients, or by friends of patients, clergy, district visitors, &c.; and most frequently by doctors who desire the assistance of hospital-trained nurses out of hospital, but no case is taken on the books until the superintendent has approved it as one requiring treatment of a kind only to be given by a skilled hand. No case nursed unless a doctor is in attendance. The nurses are ladies by birth and education, and have all received one year’s training in hospital, and subsequently six months’ special training for district work under the superintendent-general of the association at the Central Home, 23, Bloomsbury-square. where she passes examinations in hygiene, physiology, and anatomy, before being passed on to a district home, where they work from house to house under doctor’s orders; the district superintendent of each home being responsible for the proper nursing of all the cases nursed from that home, and the nurses obeying doctor’s orders under her guidance. The association is supported by voluntary contributions. The nurses are all paid, one of the objects of the association being to provide a suitable profession for educated gentlewomen.
OXFORD INSTITUTE FOR RESIDENT HOSPITAL TRAINED NURSES, 298 & 299, Oxford-street. Number of nurses, 50. Terms, £1 1s. per week. In connection with this there is a disinfecting cottage, where nurses for all contagious diseases reside. A superior educated class of nurse only kept. It is requested of those who may avail themselves of nurses from this institute that the following rules be observed: That the nurse always receive that consideration and attention which may be expected by a person who is contributing essentially to the comfort of a sick member of the family. That, where possible, her meals be not taken in the sick room. That her meals be cooked for her, and that her diet include two half-pints of ale, or two glasses of port wine daily, but no spirits unless specially ordered by the medical attendant, and extra tea, coffee, or cocoa, when the nurse is sitting up at night; or, as so many of the nurses are total abstainers, 3s. 6d. per week stimulant money is charged in lieu of the above. That, when the nature of the case will admit of it, the nurse be allowed to go out daily for one hour, and if required to sit up at night, be permitted to go to bed for six hours during the afternoon, out of the sick room. The nurse can sit up every night for many weeks, if this be done. Laundry, cab, stimulant money, and all travelling expenses of the nurse or attendant to be defrayed by the families engaging, and paid to the nurse or attendant (but not the service money, which must be sent to the superintendent, with the 24 hours’ notice of dismissal). For medical, surgical, or monthly cases, the nurses wear washing dresses, white caps, white aprons linen collars and cuffs; and should the washing not be done by the family laundress, a charge of 2s. 6d. per week is made. Fever and small-pox cases, 3s. 6d. per week. Mental nurses, who do not wear washing dresses, 2s. per week; and all nurses, excepting mental, who do not wear washing dresses in the sick room, not to have washing money. The nurses must conform with the usages of the house in which they are located, and any irregularity of conduct should be immediately reported to the institute. Ordinary medical diseases, from £1 1s. to £1 10s. per week. Zymotic or contagious diseases, £2 2s. Simple surgical cases, from £1 1s. to £1 10s. Severe surgical injuries, major operations in surgery, &c, £2 2s. Female attendants: Mental diseases without violence, from £1 1s. to £1 10s.; acute or suicidal mania, £2 2s. Male attendants: Insanity, unaccompanied by violence, £2 2s.; acute mania, delirium tremens, or suicidal tendency, £3 3s. In obstetric cases, the terms are from £5 5s. to £15 15s per month. Fever nurses reside in a separate house. In all contagious cases one weeks additional fee is charged as disinfecting money. NB. Monthly nurses are never sent to contagious or infectious disorders.
ST. JOHN’S NURSING COMMUNITY, 8, Norfolk-street, Strand. —Over 200 nurses. From £1 1s. to £2 2s. per week. Nurses (sick or monthly) sent to any (but mental) cases, at home or abroad, on application to the lady superior. St. John’s Home supplies the nursing staff at Kings College and Charing-cross Hospitals, and has a maternity home at 7, Ashburnham-road, Chelsea, for the reception of poor respectable married women, and for the training of monthly nurses. Ladies and respectable women received for training in all branches of nursing.
ST. KATHARINE’S KENSINGTON AND FULHAM DISTRICT NURSES’ HOME, 62, Warwick-road, Earl’s-court, SW—Indefinite number of nurses. Terms, gratis. An association of ladies. They live together, and are trained to work as nurses among the sick poor, under a hospital sister holding first-class certificates as a trained nurse. These ladies are sent out to nurse the sick poor gratuitously in their homes; they teach them to nurse their own sick, and by introducing a knowledge of common, sanitary laws, show them how to prevent disease. In cases of destitution, nourishment and sick comforts are provided, and such remedies as may be required, which are supplied by a dispensary established at the home, for the benefit of patients recommended by the clergy and medical men. An invalid kitchen for convalescents as open on Tuesday and Friday, and various other charities are attached to, and worked from the home. Supported by voluntary contributions.
ST. MARY MAGDALENE’S HOME FOR TRAINED NURSES, 3, Delamere-crescent, Paddington W. Twenty - five nurses. Terms: £1 1s. weekly.
WESTMINSTER TRAINING SCHOOL AND HOME FOR NURSES, 8, Broad-sanctuary, Westminster (temporary); home to be built in Victoria. street, S.W Founded (1874) by Lady Augusta Stanley. —Number of nurses vanes, at present 43. Terms: All the nurses are paid: sums vary from £16 to £30. Three years’ engagement after one month’s trial on both sides. The intention of the founders was to provide better nursing for the Westminster Hospital, and superior women as sick nurses in private families. The following are the principal regulations: That the charge for the services of a nurse for each week (or any part of a week) be £1 10s., and that the limit of attendance upon a case be 3 months: that for any further period (if allowed) the weekly charge be double. That travelling expenses and washing be paid by the family employing the nurse. In infectious cases £1 to be paid to provide temporary lodgings for the nurse. That the committee do not undertake chronic cases, and that when under special circumstances they consent to continue attendance upon a case beyond the limit of 3 months, it be clearly understood they can only do so at the advanced rate. That all applications be made personally or in writing to the lady-supt. That where it as possible, three days’ notice of the nurse’s return to the home be sent to the lady.supt., and that in every case a report be sent, sealed up, with a candid statement of the nurse’s conduct and efficiency either from one of the family or the medical attendant, together with the amount to be paid to the institution. That patients and their friends be earnestly requested not to offer any money-gratuity to the nurse; it being the wish of the committee to cultivate disinterested service to all alike. A superannuation fund exists for the benefit of the nurses in old age or sickness, and to that fund exclusively, in the absence of any special directions, will be applied all contributions from patients and their friends, when they may be pleased to give anything out of gratitude for the services of a nurse from this institution, in addition to the amount paid for her services. That should any such donor express a wish that a portion of his gift be applied to the benefit of a particular nurse, that portion (not exceeding one-third) be reserved by the treasurer, and become her property on the satisfactory completion of her term of service. That no wine or spirits be given to the nurse unless at the request of the medical attendant. That the nurse be allowed reasonable time for rest in every 24 hours, and that when her services are required at night, she be allowed at least 6 hours of consecutive rest out of the sick-room in the day. That no nurse be sent to sleep out of the house where she is nursing without the consent of the lady-supt. That the nurse be required to wear the dress provided by the training school. That, in any case of difficulty or disability arising, the family is requested to apply immediately to the lady-supt. of the home. Regulations as to probationary training :—Young women desirous to be so trained, should apply personally, if possible, to the lady-supt. of the training school, 8, Broad Sanctuary. It is desirable that the ages of candidates should be between 25 and 35. Testimonials of health and character, according to forms supplied by the lady-supt. will be required, and when satisfactory, and as vacancies occur, the applicants will be received as probationers. Probationers will be under the direction and authority of the lady. supt. and the rules of the training school, and whilst at work in the hospital must obey and recognise all rules of that institution. Probationers will be supplied with board, lodging, and washing. If retained, the wages, in the first year, of a probationer will be £16, of which a portion may be retained until the completion of her year of probation, as guarantee of her good behaviour, and subject to forfeiture in case of misconduct. Probationers will be required to conform to any regulations in regard to uniformity in outer clothing. It is expected that at the end of a year probationers will be fitted to be nurses, and their engagement will require them to serve two years more in hospital or private nursing, with an increase of £2 for each year. At the expiration of one month from the date of entry, every probationer will be required to engage herself to continue in the service for at least two years longer. The names of the probationers will be entered on a register, in which a record will be kept of their conduct and qualifications. The probationers will be subject to be discharged at any time by the lady-supt. in case of misconduct, or should she think them inefficient or negligent. The nurse or probationer must have good English education. She is to keep her own room neat, clean, and in order, in the home, as well as to assist in the needlework. The duties of the nurses will be to attend both the rich and the poor either in hospitals or private houses. All money received for the services of nurses will belong to the fund of the training school. No nurse will be permitted to receive any private remuneration in money or clothing. Nurses and probationers will not be allowed to ask for or procure wine or spirits, either in the home or elsewhere without the express recommendation of a medical man and the knowledge of the lady-supt., but a sufficient allowance of beer or porter to be taken at meals will be provided for them. Scale of charges for private nursing:—The lowest charge for a visit, 5s. ; if the nurse is absent more than three hours, 10s. 6d.; if the nurse be required to remain one or more nights in the house, then for each week or part of a week, 30s. There are special regulations for nurses engaged by the week. All travelling expenses to be paid by the person engaging the nurse.

Charles Dickens (Jr.), Dickens's Dictionary of London, 1879

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