Jean Watson's Theory of Human Caring
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The Theory of Human Caring, which also has been reffered to as the Theory of Transpersonal Caring, is middle – range explanatory theory.
Sharon’s caring impact made a huge difference to my emotional well being which resulted to an overall positive impression during my hospital stay. I felt empowered despite my non-verbal condition because I knew my concerns were being responded to and I felt secured while I was under her care. Watson believes that the theory of caring is an endorsement of professional nursing identity and what Sharon demonstrated throughout my care is what embodies the nursing profession. The theory could be used not only by nurses that are working in a hospital setting but also in places faced with oppression, natural disasters, poverty and injustice. Watson’s theory emphasizes the humanistic aspects of nursing in combination with scientific knowledge, so it can be also applied in research by finding ways on how to deliver nursing care efficiently and in means that is acceptable to the patient. It guides the nurse to go beyond the application of technical nursing skills and show more concern towards the subjective and deeper meaning of the patient towards his/her health situation. Integration of the theory in my future nursing practice will assist in managing my priorities in order to spend uninterrupted time with my patients and pay attention to their fears or concerns regarding their care. It will aid in removing my biases and accepting the patient as unique individual regardless of their physical appearance, socioeconomic status, emotional needs or level of compliance. Lastly, it will remind me that every patient needs my unconditional support, positivity and encouragement to facilitate a faster recovery of not only the physical aspect of their stay but also the emotional/spiritual as it is a factor that will improve their quality of life. The Theory of Human Caring can give language to what was before just thoughts and ideas regarding nursing. It guides nurses so that they can see, learn and express their own unique role in health care. Moreover, this theory shall bring the nurses to a realization that we need to transcend ourselves from a state that views nursing not as a job, but as a gratifying profession-a life-giving, life-receiving career for a lifetime of growth and learning.
Specifically, this model focuses on successful methods of communication and transparent exchange of information, which contributes to sharing common goals and experience.Nurses should also be committed to science of healing from philosophical and scientific perspectives. At this point, Sitzman (2006) has singled out several important aspects of Watson’s theory that involve practicing kindness in terms of intentional caring consciousness, awareness of subjective life of individuals, cultivating individual’s spirituality and background, and engaging in teaching-learning experiences that premise on interconnectedness. Similar to Sitman (2007), Cara (2003) also examines the concept of caring as a pivotal factor in nursing profession and defines its major characteristics through carative factors that consider humanistic perspectives of nursing professional, as well as subjective experience combined with inner life world. Additionally, carative factors refer to altruistic systems of faith, value, and hope in which nurses should be sensitive to individuals and develop trustful relationships with patients. The role of nurses is confined to expressing positive regard and practice creative decision making during the caring process. Watson & Foster (2003) explores the Human Theory of Caring as an integral part of other theoretical and practical domains.
If I can live that same experience again, I think I would provide more information to the family before death is approaching. Unfortunately, health care professionals do not provide enough teaching and guidance to patients and families about what to expect during this difficult time, leaving hospice nurses with a huge amount of information to teach at the end of life. This creates an extra burden for the family and nurse at a time when a vulnerable interaction is taking place. I will always remember Mr. A and his family because I could connect with them in a special way.
Cara, C. (2003). A pragmatic view of Jean Watson’s caring theory. International Journal For Human Caring, 7(3), 51-61.
Sitzman, K. (2007). Teaching-learning professional caring based on Jean Watson’s Theory of Human Caring. International Journal for Human Caring, 11(4), 8-16.
Suliman, W. A., Welmann, E., Omer, T., & Thomas, L. (2009). Applying Watson’s Nursing Theory to Assess Patient Perceptions of Being Cared for in a Multicultural Environment. Journal Of Nursing Research (Taiwan Nurses Association), 17(4), 293-300.
Wade, G., & Kasper, N. (2006). Nursing students’ perceptions of instructor caring: an instrument based on Watson’s theory of transpersonal caring. Journal of Nursing Education, 45(5), 162-168.
Watson, J., & Foster, R. (2003). The Attending Nurse Caring Model: integrating theory, evidence and advanced caring–healing therapeutics for transforming professional practice. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 12(3), 360-365.