Nursingis critical because it facilitates the processes of patient recoveryand gives substantial support to health departments in the field ofhealth. The stakeholders in the field of nursing use differentconcepts in an attempt to define or to describe what patients and thesociety expect from nurses. Caring is among the most discussedconcepts in the field of nursing and it refers to a feeling thathelps nurses feel empathetic to patients and motivates them to offerquality care without being pressured to do so. The theory of caringwas developed by Watson, who defined it as a practice by whichregistered nurses are able to react to clients as exceptional humanbeings and make out the feelings of their clients as they do theirbest to settle them (Lachman, 2012). The concept of caring is oftenmistaken with the nursing practice, but in reality, nursing practicerequires knowledge and practice while caring requires a willing heartthat motivate nurses to combine their expertise and knowledge to takecare of patients unconditionally and without an external influence.
Thepresent study will focus on the analysis of the concept of caring.The aim of conducting this concept analysis is to enhance theunderstanding of the basic components of caring. A success analysisof the concept will also help in determining the significance ofcaring to patients, especially the relationship between caring thepatient outcome and patient satisfaction. The analysis will startwith a literature review, followed by two uses of the concept, twodefining attributes, two model cases, two alternative cases, oneantecedent and one consequence, and two empirical referents.
Theconcepts of nursing and caring are quite intertwined to an extentthat it is impossible for a registered nurse to claim practicingnursing without caring for patients. According to Lachman (2012)caring in the health care setting means the exhibition of concern,feeling, and empathy for patients. The concept of caring is based onthree elements that include transpersonal relationship, carativefactors, and the caring moment. The element of carative focuses onhonor that should be given to human dimensions surrounding thenursing’s work and the subjective experiences of patients (Lachman,2012). This element is observed in the nursing setting by building atrusting and caring relationship between the nurse and patient. Theelement of transpersonal relationship focuses on the description ofmoral commitment and consciousness that help nurses make intentionalrelationship with their clients. The third element, caring moment,describe factors (including time and space) that are required forcaring to take place. This implies that caring nurses establishrelationships with their patients, show empathy to patients, and taketheir time to interact with patients in order to understand them in abetter way.
Caringis considered to be among the critical elements of human developmentand survival. The concept of caring is widely discussed in theprofession of nursing, because it is associated with patients’satisfaction and enhanced treatment outcome. Rafii (2007) stated thatcaring in the nursing profession is a moral ideal that preserveshuman dignity in the health care system. The outcome of caring can bemeasured by observing improvements in the well-being of a patient.Caring is associated with an improvement in the quality because itencourages nurses to serve the best interests of patients, whichmakes patients feel that nurses are not only fulfilling their careerobligations, but there are pursuing the a full recovery of thepatient (Finkelman & Kenner, 2013). Patients tend to feel moresatisfied with the treatment process when they perceive that nursesare caring for them.
Usesof the concept of caring
Theconcept of caring is often used in about eight different ways, butthe most common uses include ethics and holistic. The primaryresponsibility of nurses is to care for their patients, but aneffective caring process can only be achieved when nurses observeethical guidelines that govern their profession. For example, thepatient-client relationship help nurses address the specific healthneed of their clients, which in turn help nurses deliver qualitycaring services that satisfy their clients. This is the essence ofbeing ethical in the nursing practice (Larsen, 2015). In addition,the concept of caring require nurses to show empathy to patients anddeliver a holistic care for them. Holistic caring means that thenurses should focus on healing a whole person, and not just theunderlying medical condition.
Theconcept of caring is associated with numerous attributes, but themost critical ones include relationship and variability. Theattribute of relationship is based on the interaction between thepatient and the nurse, which should strictly be professional (Rafii,2007). A warm relationship between the nurse and the client creates aplatform for each of them to communicate and understand each other,which enhance the quality of care. Variability is a criticalattribute that is mostly applied in diverse communities. It requiresnurses to change their mode of delivering health care to clientsdepending on the specific needs of those clients, the environment,and conditions, in order to ensure that health care is effective.
Inthe first case study, a woman has been brought to an emergency unitsuffering from serious gastrointestinal bleeding. The bleeding isassociated with oesophageal varices. A team of nurses and medicalproviders recommend a blood transfusion, but the woman refused,stating that her traditional beliefs do not allow her to undergoblood transfusion. The nurse tried to use other types of volumeexpanding alternatives, but the patient dies while undergoingtreatment. This case illustrates the caring attribute of variability,where nurse are willing to care for the woman, but they have to varythe method to respect her beliefs (Mooney, 2015).
Mr.Francis suffered from cerebrovascular stroke and was admitted to aword. He remained unconscious for two days. After becoming conscious,nurses and medics said that he had become aphasic and had a markeddysphagia. It was concluded that he should undergo enteral feeding,but he kept on removing the tubes because he was unsatisfied by thatprocedure. However, nurses joined hands with the family members anddiscussed the significance of the enteral feeding and Francis agreedto it. This case illustrates the caring attribute of relationshipbetween a nurse and the client, which is the basis of trust,openness, and the opportunity to understand each other.
Mr.Clinton is a 70 year old man suffering from osteoarthritis. Afterdiscussing the issue with his nurse and the doctor, the two concludethat there is nothing that could be done to help him. Mr. Clintonbecame anxious and felt irritated and left the hospital. From thiscase, Mr. Clinton felt that the nurse and the doctor did notunderstand his problem, and did not believe that he really felt thepain. This is contrary to the expected conduct of nurses, who areexpected to establish a relationship with clients, which is one ofthe key attributes of caring, in order to understand their needsbefore discarding their claims (Larsen, 2015).
Mr.Peter was admitted at the hospital after suffering from rheumatoidarthritis. After a lengthy discussion, the nurse and thephysiotherapist concluded that Mr. Peter should undergo a multimodalapproach that would modulate his pain. The nurse told Mr. Peter, thatshe knew how to address his illness and instructed him to follow themultimodal strategy for three works, after which he was discharged.From this case, a relationship exists between health care providers,but they do not allow interact well with the patient. Mr. acts as aninactive recipient of the care. Under the concept of caring, the twohealth care professionals should have established a relationship, isamong the major attributes of caring, with Mr. Peter and allow him toparticipate in the process of determining the best treatment approach(Larsen, 2015).
Antecedentand a consequence
Antecedentsrefer to events or incidents that are expected to take place before agiven concept can occur (Larsen, 2015). In the case of the concept ofcaring, the antecedent is that nurses should understand the patient’smedical needs and all that they require to assist the patient. Thistype of antecedent can be referred to the “awareness” of theneeds of patients before caring for them.
Consequencesrefer to events that occur after a given concept has taken place. Inthe present case, a successful implementation of the concept of careby nurses will have several consequences, one of them being anincrease in the quality of treatment outcome. This is because caring,which is achieved by establishing a warm relationship with clients tohelp nurses understand the needs of each patient. This ensures thatnurses address the specific health needs affecting the patient, whichreduces medical errors and increase chances for successful recovery(Finkelman & Kenner, 2013).
Empiricalreferents approve and gauge the availability of a given concept inthe real world. They refer to groups of incidents in which theirsubsistence and presence indicate the possibility of the concept(Larsen, 2015). Empirical referents define behaviors that results ininterpersonal nurse-client relationship that is established through asystematic procedure and acts as the basis of concern for sickclient. There are two major measuring tools that can be used in thenursing practice. First, caring can be measured using CARE-Q, whichhas an established reputation because it has the capacity todetermine the level of patients’ contentment with the care thatthey receive from nurses (Larsen, 2015). Secondly, CARE/SAT appliesthe same fifty items that are used in CARE-Q, but it has additionalitems that make more effective in measuring the level of caring.
Caringis among the most common concept that are discussed and applied inthe field of nursing. The successful analysis of the concept ofcaring will make it clear how it differs from the nursing practicingand how it relates to patient outcome and patient satisfaction.Caring nurses are able to demonstrate empathy to patients and givethem care that they believe is of the highest quality. This helpspatient to develop trust in nurses and increases chances ofestablishment of a professional relationship that in turn allownurses to understand the patient’s problem. A good practice ofcaring culminates in enhanced treatment outcome and the satisfactionof patients.
Finkelman,A. & Kenner, C. (2013). Professionalnursing concepts (2 Ed.).Burlington: Jones and Bartlett Learning, LLC.
Lachman,D. (2012). Applying the ethics of care to your nursing practice.MEDSURGNursing,21 (2), 112-116.
Larsen,D. (2015). Painmanagement in nursing: What does it mean?London: Pain Talk.
Mooney,H. (2015). Casestudies.Royal College of Nursing.
Rafii,F. (2007). Nurse caring in Iran and its relationship with patientsatisfaction. AustralianJournal of Advanced Nursing,26 (2), 75-84.