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PHILOSOPHY OF NURSING PAPER

Philosophy of Nursing Paper


NUR 4142 Synthesis of Nursing Practice
Browning Dailey
March 23, 2015

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Philosophy of Nursing Paper
Nursing is a multifaceted profession, which includes advocacy, teaching, learning, research,
collaboration, leadership, creativity, accountability and much more. It is most important to
advocate for our patients and provide them with the best care and resources possible. We
establish trusting relationships with our patients and use that open line of communication to
really dig and find out what exactly our patients need. The nurse actively listens to the patient;
she is the one who is present most in the healthcare setting. This presence gives us the
opportunity to educate our patients, to promote wellness and prevent future illness. Teaching is a
huge part of nursing. We teach our patients from the moment we meet, expressing safety
concerns, explaining procedures, medication side effects, signs and symptoms of recurring
illness; just to name a few. Our patients hold us in high regard and respect the information we
give them; because of this nurses have a great opportunity to empower their patients to really
take control of their own health care needs. With the advancement of medical technology and
research, the healthcare environment is ever changing. Nurses must be willing and able to learn
new practices realizing that they will be lifelong learners. Ongoing research provides us with the
best evidence based practices. Nurses must participate in research to better the profession and
contribute to increasing quality and better patient outcomes. The job of a nurse requires immense
collaboration among numerous healthcare providers. In order to successfully care for our
patients, we must communicate efficiently and effectively, providing proper delegation and
confirming accuracy of orders. Leadership is a quality all nurses have. We take initiatives by
heading quality improvement projects on specific units, taking on roles such as charge nurse, and
providing a voice joining hospital committees and national associations such as ANA. Nurses
have to think outside the box on many occasions using creativity to solve problems and make

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things better. It is often the nurse who comes up with innovative ideas to improve the delivery of
care. To be a nurse means being responsible and having accountability for our patients well
being.
Nursing is also a profession called to serve and care. Nursing is compassion, and
dedication to the greater good of individuals in need. We must practice with non-judgmental
behaviors and be culturally sensitive for the diverse world we live in. We know many individuals
cannot afford to maintain their health and our job is to get them the resources they need. We are
the ones who listen to the patients story and we are the ones who can make a positive impact on
their health with something as simple as a referral to social services. Nursing is good help to
those in need financially, physically, and emotionally. Patients need to be nurtured holistically
through mind, body, and soul in order to achieve their optimal wellness. Nurses are a part of the
healing process for their patients, because they themselves are the environments. Incorporating
Jean Watsons Caritas factors into nursing practice serves as a great framework for fostering the
human spirit and increasing patients overall wellness. She focuses on caring for the patient by
practicing ten caritas factors (Feurer, 2012). These factors focus on the physical, emotional,
environmental, religious, and social context of the patient. The ten caritas factors ultimately lead
to allowing the patient and the nurse to create a relationship that gives them both a sense of
dignity and trust. Watsons Theory of Caring promotes enhanced healing, safety, and a sense of
humanity for all who are involved.
My personal philosophy of nursing is reflected in my practice every day. When I initiate a
relationship with a new patient, I am completely opened minded and non-judgmental. I use
active listening and presence to establish trust and show compassion and caring. I use my
knowledge of health and wellness to empower my patients to make good decisions and take

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control of their well-being. I am an advocate for my patients, making sure they receive the best
services and highest quality outcomes. I am a team player, collaborating and practicing good
communication skills with other members of the healthcare team to ensure everyone is on the
same page regarding care of the patients. I take pride in doing things right, not cutting corners
and supervising tasks that are delegated appropriately. I am willing to learn new strategies and I
embrace change especially when research shows what is best for our patients. I want to be
creative and innovative in the clinical setting. I am a leader for my patients, allowing them to
make decisions and then taking charge of initiation through to completion.
A memorable moment in my nursing school experience helped guide me in my personal
philosophy of nursing. I was in the hallway finishing my charting in clinical one afternoon and
continued to hear a patient cry out in pain. The nurse was obviously frustrated due to her large
workload and the fact that this patient was maxed out on pain medication. She felt she couldnt
do anything else to help her and moved on to the next task in another room. As a student, I had a
much smaller workload so I decided to go in and see if there was anything I could do to ease this
womans distress. As a mother, I know when my children are hurting, sometimes it just takes a
hug and a back rub and they feel instantly better. This patient had peritonitis and was having
peritoneal dialysis, ouch! Her husband was standing in the corner looking very nervous and
upset. He didnt know what to do. I sat on the patients bed and began to rub her back gently. I
spoke softly to her and told her to try and relax. In less than five minutes the patient was asleep.
Thats right, asleep! Her husband was very gracious and I felt like a million bucks because I had
made both the patient and her husband feel so much better. In less than five minutes I had
positively impacted these people with a simple caring human touch. If I was unsure of my path
before, this was my moment of awe where I knew nursing was where I needed to be.

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My original philosophy of nursing paper expressed values and beliefs of giving optimal
care, respecting others values, and being a patient advocate. I remain true to those values and
have expanded upon them through the many experiences I have had in nursing school. I now
consider nursing much more diverse. It is more than giving optimal care. It is being an advocate,
empowering patients with knowledge, collaborating and communicating. Nursing is being a
leader, caring about the profession and evidenced based research. Nursing is being culturally
sensitive and wanting to serve those in need. As a nurse I will encompass each of these core
values in my practice and build upon them continuously as I grow in knowledge and experience.
Benner (2001) describes a skill acquisition in nursing model based on level of experience.
In this model, the nurse or performer goes through a series of proficiency stages; novice,
advanced beginner, competent, proficient, and expert (Benner, 2001). As the nurse passes
through these stages they also achieve three changes in skill performance; relying on experience
versus abstract principles, perceiving situations as a whole versus parts, and becoming an
involved performer versus a detached observer (Benner, 2001). The novice nurse is described as
having no experience, relying on concrete rules. A new nursing student is a novice nurse.
Advanced beginners are described as having some experiences to guide their practice while
using the rules theyre taught. The competent nurse is someone who has worked on a specific
unit for a few years dealing with the same types of situations on a regular basis. The competent
nurse is a planner. The proficient nurse starts to perceive situations as a whole. The expert nurse
has an immense experiential background and no longer needs to rely on rules to perceive or act
in any given situation.
I would consider myself in the skill acquisition stage of advanced beginner. I have been
in the novice stage in the past as a new nursing student, learning rules and tasks in the lab and

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classroom setting. I have had the opportunity to practice skills and classroom knowledge in many
clinical settings in the past two years. The clinical immersion experience I have had this semester
in the Memorial Regional Medical Center Emergency Department has given me the situational
experiences I needed to progress to the stage of advanced beginner. I have been able to
experience situations acting as the nurse and have had the guidance of my preceptor to explain
why certain aspects are present with certain situations. The next time I experience similar
situations I will be prepared with an expectation from previous experience which will help me
decide what the best thing to do is. The ability to draw upon previous experience will help
ground me as a nurse and help me progress through the three changes in skill performance.
Currently I am transitioning from relying on abstract principles to relying on experience. As I
continue to grow and gain experience I will be able to look at the whole picture and start to stray
away from only looking at parts of situations.
The next stage of skill acquisition for me to move to will be competent nurse. I plan to
work in the emergency department for several years to gain experience and knowledge in the
nursing field. I feel as though this will give me vast situational experience due to the variety of
illness and ages seen in the emergency department. I plan to use my available resources and
mentoring seasoned nurses to help point me in the right direction. This way I can use the
experiences of others to hasten my learning and increase my critical thinking. I will strive to
learn the best way for me as an individual to prioritize my patients care and plan my day. I will
seek educational opportunities such as advancement certifications and clinical ladder. I plan to go
back to school to further my education and clinical expertise through a nurse practitioner
program. I plan to continue working and going to school part time to ensure I gain as much
experience as possible before transitioning to the next level of practitioner. According to Benner

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(2001), years of situational experience are crucial to progressing through the skill acquisition
stages. The experienced nurse is the expert nurse. I will strive to move through the stages until I
am an expert nurse who can see the whole picture and is an involved performer in the care of my
patients. I will hold my values and beliefs of patient advocacy, empowerment, caring, and service
to a high degree. I will practice nursing using my own philosophy of nursing, delivering
excellent patient care, resulting in optimal patient outcomes.

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References
Benner, P. (2001). From novice to expert: Excellence and power in clinical nursing practice
(Commemorative ed.). Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice Hall.
Feurer, A., (2012). Jean Watsons Theory of Caring lecture. Bon Secours Memorial College of
Nursing, Richmond, VA.