The theory that most interest me is Betty Neuman’s System Theory. This model is comprehensive and is applicable is many settings. As a nurse with a wellness perspective, it fits my practice approach very well. Neuman describes the nurse primary intervention as prevention and assisting the client to prevent harm from stressors. This model is easily applicable to psychiatric settings and community health models. Illness is described as a state of insufficiency with needs unsatisfied (Ume-Nwagbo, 2006). The basic assumptions included a clear approach to the nursing prevention intervention including: Primary Prevention- health promotion and disease prevention education Secondary Prevention- Focuses on preventing damage as the system reacts to the stressor Tertiary Prevention- offers support as the system attempts to reconstruct The theory can best be described as descriptive and can be utilized during education before, during and after the stressor occurs. In this instance research is supported by the ability to implement the theoretical constructs at multiple levels of system stress. This theory can provide significant information about prevention of illness. Research can determine the relationship between illness amelioration and the nursing prevention interventions.
I have used this approach when working with clients in the substance abuse field. The most noted primary prevention approach for school children is called D.A.R.E. I have used similar principles with clients about substance abuse before use has occurred to prevent the stress. When presented with a delirious patient, I have had to use nursing interventions to assist symptomatology and once cleared educated the client about the substance. Finally, with long term alcoholic clients, the tertiary prevention is key to assist with abstinence education.
McEwin, M., & Wills, E.M. (2011). Theoretical basis for nursing. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
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