I have noted myself the poor portrayal of nurses on "House." Nurses usually just clean up the messes and answer the call bells. The doctors give injections and meds, perform entire codes on their own, and interact with the family and patients. It's not just the nurses who get short-shrift, though. Lab and diagnostic techs are never portrayed and neither are transporters, engineers, housekeepers, volunteers, social workers, etc. I understand the criticisms of this show, but I think the Center for Nursing Advocacy needs to get a grip. Television shows are for fantasy and entertainment, not education. Lots of people fantasize about being powerful doctors. Nobody fantasizes about being nurses or lab techs. People who do just become them. Anyhow, consider just the logistics:
- The show needs get the actual characters on-screen. "House" is not about a hospital, it's about House and the other doctors. If the MDs were absent whenever the show was in the lab, they wouldn't be on the show. And if the MDs were always portrayed in the dictating rooms or the staff conferences room, it would be a pretty boring show! Having the MDs do all the work is just a dramatic device, not a slight to nursing and allied health care.
- The show can't afford to pay all those people. Can you imagine if the cast of "House" included all the staff of a hospital--you couldn't afford to make it!
- The show is a comedy. This gets overlooked a lot because it is a dark comedy, but all the business about having nurses clean up is supposed to be funny, not realistic.
- The show is based on Sherlock Holmes. In the Holmes books, he and Watson and a few other supporting characters perform all the law-enforcement functions. "House" follows the same model.
I'd also like to point out to the Center that nurses do "do secret naughty things with big powerful male physicians." In fact, that seems to be a pretty big part of nursing as far as I can tell. Don't like it? Try passing some judgement on these people when the rumors go around instead of complaining when the public points out what everyone knows.