Discussion Question 1
Nursing theories when put into practice help the nurses to organize their care as well as enabling them to question patient information as well as allowing them to make good clinical decisions that help in determining the best action to take when handling a particular patient. A theory also helps in planning so that a nurse can be able to tell the possible outcomes of a given patient. A nursing theory also helps in measuring as well as evaluating the care delivered to the patients.
Colley (2003) states that nursing theories can be put into different categories depending on their functions, or they can also be based on their principles. For example, the body image theory that states that body image tend to be multifaceted psychological and experience of the embodiment that profoundly affects human life quality. The second theory is patient-centered –that states that nursing literature is made of information related to teaching of a patient that is a key part of the nurse’s role. Others include needs theories that are based on assisting individual patients to meet their physical and mental needs. Interaction theories concentrate on the relationship that nurses develop with their patients. Outcome theories view nurses as the changing force and facilitates one to adapt the ill health. Outcome theory further suggests that the nurse’s specific role is that of promoting adaptation in health as well as in illness (Cody, 2011).
For a nurse to be competent, he or she has to combine effectively the knowledge generated from several other study fields with solid and rigorous facts originating from the nursing profession. It is also worth noting that not only the practical aspects that are required for a nurse who is working in a clinical setting, but also the theoretical knowledge which helps to strengthen one’s action.
Nursing theories help a nurse to distinguish facts from fallacies as well as providing him or her with principles that support the practice. It also helps one to be able to generate further knowledge in the nursing profession.
However, there has been a lot of confusion due to lack of agreement in profession literature towards nursing theories. This has made many people view Nursing theory as irrelevant to practice. Nursing theory provides nurses with the knowledge that help them to improve practice through explaining, describing, predicting as well as controlling phenomena. It also helps nurses to be able to explain to patients what they are doing and why they are doing it. Moreover, a theory will provide nurses with a sense of professional autonomy through guiding their clinical practice, learning, as well as their research function.
Discussion Question 2
Contemporary nursing theories are very effective, and they give nurses required knowledge that enable them assist their patients to meet effectively their need. For instance, the Theory of the Deliberative Nursing Process meets the criterion of significance. This theory has helped in understanding of the relationship between the patient and the nurse as well as understanding the role and identity of the nurse profession. Features such as precise specification of the activities, sequence, as well as requirements makes up the Deliberative Nursing Process (Fawcett & Desanto-Madeya, 2012).
According to Orlando’s work he points out that each patient has a unique need and that nurses have a unique deliberative process that help them determine their patient’s specific need. Therefore Orlando’s theory prevents the nurse from acting on invalidated assumptions. His theory gives much emphasize on the importance of the continuous involvement of patients in all aspects of their care. This has highly shifted the nursing care, and it has now become highly individualized resulting to improved health care (Fawcett & Desanto-Madeya, 2012).
The Deliberative Nursing Process effectively meets the parsimony criterion where the theory has proven to be excellent in the paucity of words that are used to pass complex ideas. It also meets the criterion of internal consistency where the content of the theory is highly based on Orlando’s conceptualization of nursing and human beings. Testability is another criterion that the Theory of the Deliberative Nursing Process has passed. Testability is used to test middle range theories. Therefore, the contemporary nursing theories are very effective and to a large extent they have shaped my practice (Fawcett & Desanto-Madeya, 2012).
Discussion Question 3
Theory and critical thinking are not limited only to theoreticians in the nursing field. Instead it is integral to all the roles played by the nurses among them include roles of researchers and clinicians. In research for instance, critical thinking could come about in several aspects of the research process from conceptualizing the research questions up to interpreting the meaning of the resulting data. It can be demonstrated in finding the phenomenon within the field of nursing and it helps to distinguish between relevant and non-relevant phenomenon as well as in deciding the relationship of the research question to the theoretical domain of nursing and to the focus of nursing profession.
Other theoretical analysis are used in defining the phenomenon and also as the research process. In this, the researcher will be interested in theories that can be prescribed in a nursing action. If there are so many theories available, then the researcher will evaluate them and come up with the best to be put in nursing practice. Normally, a theory that will expand the knowledge is selected as the best, therefore, even before the process of theory evaluation for use in research tend to show another component of critical thinking. (Masters, 2014).
After a theory is critically evaluated, a hunch may be evolved, and proposition may be developed to direct the research process or even to test the theory. Then the researcher finishes the work after testing the theory by describing the findings or by interpreting them relating to the original theory. Each of these activities is theoretical and highly requires an important component of critical thinking and theory building. Each of these activities must be embraced as an aspect of engaging in the work required for the development of theoretical nursing.
Discussion Question 4
There is great need to operationalize nursing theories further since they help nurses to develop additional knowledge that supplements the practical knowledge. It also helps them to answer questions that are asked by their patients or by the members of other different professions. It should also be simplified bearing that many of the theories that are in practice currently have been bypassed by technology as well as other current issues in education. New paradigms should be developed that reflect the current social environment, technological models of communications as well as exponential knowledge growth.
Currently, the nursing programs have constraints on resources, a lot of work with less time and also some clinical settings that are even less than perfect. These factors highly challenge and create a downward pressure on the current programs. This calls for an immediate simplification hence making things simpler (Burns & Grove, 2010).