Ida Jean Orlando-Pelletier’s Nursing Theory

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NURS 300 – Assignment: Term Paper
An exposition of Ida Jean Orlando-Pelletier’s Nursing Theory December 8, 2010
Jason J. Harrison, RN
St. Joseph’s College
NURS 300 – Assignment: Term Paper
An exposition of Ida Jean Orlando-Pelletier’s Nursing Theory December 8, 2010
Jason J. Harrison, RN
St. Joseph’s College

Ida Jean Orlando (Pelletier), a theorist renowned in the field of nursing theory, was born in New Jersey in 1926 to Italian immigrant parents. After being reared during the Great Depression, Orlando’s mother disagreed with her decision to pursue an education in nursing and expressed her preference that she become a home maker. (The Nurse Theorists: Portraits of Excellence). Mrs. Orlando received her nursing diploma from New York Medical College in 1947. Prior to her next degree, she worked in the maternity ward of a now-defunct hospital where she witnessed poor treatment of the patients causing her to leave and begin work at Maimonides Hospital in Brooklyn. Continuing her education during this time, she received her B.S. in Public Heath from St. John’s University in 1951 followed by her M.A. in Mental Health from Columbia University in 1954. Up until this time, Orlando had worked in various specialties of nursing, including Medical-surgical, Obstetrics and the Emergency Ward. Immediately upon completion of her education at Columbia, she went on to work for Yale University, first as an associate professor at the nursing school, then as Director the Graduate program in Mental Health & Psychiatric Nursing. In the same year, she became principle investigator and a research associate of a federally funded project titled Integration of Mental Health Concepts in a Basic Curriculum that lasted 7 years. She later served as Clinical Nursing Consultant in Mental Health at McLean Hospital, Mass. from 1962-1972. Afterwards, she then became a nurse educator at Metropolitan States Hospital, also in Mass., in 1981. She was then promoted to Assistant Director of Nursing Education & Research in 1987 where she remained until her retirement in 1992. After retirement, Mrs. Orlando continued to travel and lecture until her death in 2007. During her career, she authored two books: The Dynamic Nurse-Patient Relationship in 1961and The Discipline and Teaching of Nursing Processes in1972 with emphasis on the former of the two as it contained the Deliberative Nursing Process theory that she is most acknowledged for.

Orlando possessed a view of patients that could possibly have its roots in her upbringing. Being the daughter of Italian immigrants in the era she was raised, individuality was generally not encouraged with more emphasis placed on working and rearing a family (Pozzetta, 2010). It’s feasible to believe that Orlando’s views of the person as a whole grew out of an opposition to the mindset of her parents and their generation. She is known as viewing a person as an untethered being, separate from society’s figurative machine full of human cogs that her parents and their peers were accustomed to. This is evidenced by her choice to pursue an education and a job at a time when merely 28% of women were working (Ferriss, 1971), placing her in the minority mindset at the time. This is possibly the foundation of her philosophy regarding the person/individual. Orlando did not intentionally strive to create a massively influential contribution to nursing theory. In actuality, the initial catalyst for the compilation of the data which eventually took form has her theory was pure obligation. From 1954 to 1958, while fulfilling her duties as the investigator & researcher of the previously mentioned federal study, she collected the figures that were the basic for her theory--interactions categorized as “good” nursing and “bad” nursing. After completion of the study and while composing the results, she retroactively realized her investigations would be useful to identify quality of nursing care. As basic as...
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