Values, Assumptions, & Beliefs in Nursing Practice

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Topics: Nursing, Childbirth
Identify and describe the values, assumptions and beliefs that inform nursing practice

There are a variety of values, assumptions, and beliefs that influence my perspective and performance as a labor and delivery nurse. Values guide the very principles of care and the nurse’s vision of its overall purpose, while certain assumptions and beliefs are involved in directing care on a more day-to-day level in a highly profound and meaningful way. Ethical, moral, and even spiritual values inform nursing practice in a labor and delivery setting. A common nursing value, for example, is the emphasis on improving the quality of life’s experiences rather than simply “fixing problems” from a strictly medical perspective. This can have major implications for how the birthing experience is approached before, during, and after the actual period of labor and delivery, and places both the patient and the nurse in a much different total context than one that is simply medical. Besides, as a labor and delivery nurse, we also serve as patient advocates, which is enhanced by our cumulative knowledge gathered through years of experience. As educators, we normalized the birth experience and served as coach for the patient, her partner, and family members as both interpreters of medical information and procedures, as well as, providing advice that assisted in normalizing the birth experience. Other values can have equally important implications for how the nurse perceives and approaches her work, and simply having values implies a level of importance and respect that is brought to nursing practice that is not always present. The assumptions that I make regarding nursing theory and practice in the labor and delivery room also have direct implications on how that practice is performed. Some of these assumptions can have positive consequences, while others can be more negative, but all have an impact on care. On the positive side, assumptions of patient honesty and accuracy in their

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