Florence Nightingale

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Nursing Theorist Grid

Theorist Selected: Florence Nightingale

Description of Theory: Nightingale was the first to publish her theory in 1860 about the importance of the environment on the patient and healing.   The patient in connection with the environment, air, temperature, light, water and remaining clean that contribute to the healing process (Parker, 2006).   Her theory also states that it is the nurses calling to assist the patient to place him or her in the best conditions for nature to act (Gourlay, 2004).   She believed that nature cures.   When there is not balance in the environment, meaning the overwhelming of air pollutants, the patient must use his or her energy to help them deal with the negative effects of these pollutants which, in turn drains him or her of what is important to the healing process.   It is also Nightingale’s belief, the conditions of the home, community and health care setting are very important to the health and healing process.   The environment will prevent, contribute to, or ward off illness and death. The environment is also what can be changed and manipulated by the nurse (Parker, 2006).   She believed the environment is important to the patient’s health, that nurses should support the environment to help in the healing process, the patient is consistently interacting with environment and that health was dependent on the proper control of the environment (Parker, 2006).   Florence Nightingale believed that the environment is the central concept of nursing with focus on warmth, odors, noise, and light (Chinn, Kramer, & Chinn, 2008). 

Theory’s Historical background: In 1854 (Ellis, 2010), Florence went to serve in the Crimean War where she discovered the poor conditions of the hospital and that more soldiers were dyeing inside of the hospitals then on the battlefield (Tourville & Ingalls, 2003).   It was here that she helped transform the hospital by improving sanitary conditions in turn decreasing the...
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