Nursing Theory and Research -Paradigm and Metaparadigm

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According to Polit and Hungler (1997) paradigm is a "way of looking at natural phenomena that encompasses a set of philosophical assumptions and that guides one's approach to inquiry" (pg. 463). Metaparadigm, on the other hand, "is a statement or group of statements identifying its relevant phenomena" (Fawcett, 1984, pg. 84).

The metaparadigm has four central concepts to the discipline of nursing and they are interrelated although they have different meanings. They are:

* Person,

* Environment,

* Health, and

* Nursing (caring)

This assignment has two parts:

A. How Fawcett (1984) describe Nursing (caring);

B. Explore how nursing (caring) is expressed in Christensen's (1990) nursing partnership model. I will include some specific examples from Christensen's work to support my discussion

What is nursing (caring) according to Fawcett (1984)?

Nursing is defined by American Association (1980) as "the diagnosis and treatment of human responses to actual or potential health problems" (cited in Fawcett, 1984, pg. 84). Diagnosis, according to the nursing process is when the nurses identify the actual problems and find out how to treat them in order to prevent any potential problems. According to Walker, 1971) nursing is establishing limits or boundaries in terms of the person providing care; person with health problems receiving care; the environment in which care is given and an end-state, well-being (cited in Fawcett, 1984). This is related to what I mentioned before that the four concepts are interrelated; they cannot work on their own. The connections among the four metaparadigm concepts were clearly identified by Donalson and Cowley (1978) which states that "nursing studies the wholeness or health of humans, recognizing that humans are in continuous interaction with their environments" (cited in Rolfe, 1996, pg.6). This statement may be considered the major proposition of nursing's metaparadigm.

B: Christensen's (1990) Partnership Model:

Christensen's (1990) Partnership Model identify the concept of a partnership as a basis for involvement between a nurse and a patient. This concept provides a sound humanistic foundation for nursing practice. From the patient view point, a partnership of equality and respect provides security. From nurses, patients are vulnerable or faced a situation, which requires care from health services. The experience of partnership empowers and enables people when they are patients, and we believe that security proved by the nursing partnership is a basic human right for a patient. For a partnership to exist and work effectively, there must be a willingness from all partners to collaborate as equals, and then to jointly make decisions and endeavour to solve problems.

Christensen (1990) described partnership is initiated when the patient is admitted to hospital and ceases when they go home. It is a continuous process, which offered ways of looking at what happened when a nurse offered learned expertise to a person who is going through a health related experience. The learned expertise is known as "nursing (caring).

What is nursing (caring) according to Christensen (1990)?

Although many nurses' scholars described nursing according to their own research, Christensen (1990) defined nursing "when a nurse offered learned expertise to a person who is going through a health related experience" (pg. 47). Also, New Zealand Nurse's Association (1990) defined nursing is a "specialised expression of caring, concerned primary with enhancing the ability of individuals and groups to achieve their health potential within the realities of their life situations (pg. 7).

So, nursing is the actions or treatment to help the patient promote health not only part of his body, but nursing is looking at the person holistically.

As discuss by Christensen (1990), the major work of nurse-patient partnership is commences at the time of admission to hospital and...
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