Factors affecting the place and nature of nursing—demographic, economic and epidemiological —are examined in the context of the next 25 years. Two predictions are made. The first suggests that the present trend could result in the disappearance of the clinical nurse, arising from undue emphasis being placed on the managerial role of the nurse and undue reliance on the untrained worker. The second suggests an alteration of direction of the profession, by the recognition and identification of the nursing process with stress being laid on the performance of the clinical task.