Swanson’s Theory of Caring Essay
The nursing practice is broad and encompasses different aspects of care that every caregiver should understand. Since patients face many health problems and nurses follow different philosophies, several theories have been established to define optimal care. Swanson’s theory of caring is among the broadly used theories that explain the basis of patient care, the relationship between patients and caregivers, and caregivers’ objectives in health care delivery. The theory claims that the caring process encompasses knowing [avoiding assumptions], being with [sharing feelings], doing for [comforting and protecting], enabling, and maintaining belief.
On how the theory appears to be valid, empirical testing of the theory provides different findings that validate its application in the care process. In research to find meaning through Swanson’s caring behaviors, McKelvey (2018) found that the caring theory forms the framework under which nurse educators foster meaningful healing relationships with nursing students. In a different case, Lillykutty and Samson (2018), while trying to get insights from Swanson’s theory of caring, deduced that applying this model in the health profession ensures consistent, caring behaviors that improve patient satisfaction. It is an outcome-based theory, and research that tries to evaluate its application in care has similar inferences.
The theory has a general claim that caring is being committed to patient needs. Also, the patient must be treated with high regard. These concepts that generalize the theory of caring can be obtained from the theory’s definition of caring. As Ellina et al. (2020) posited, this theory perceives caring as a nurturing way to a valued other [the patient] whom one [the caregiver] feels a personal sense of commitment and responsibility. From this definition, the connection between the patient and the caregiver is visible. Caregivers execute not only a professional mandate but also a compassionate role. They must perceive patients as valuable people to ensure that they are committed to giving them the quality of care they deserve.
One of the greatest strengths of this theory is making the patient the focus of practice. As Ellina et al. (2020) mentioned, applying this theory allows nurses to build a trusting relationship with the patient. Such a relationship promotes a positive environment, making it easy for care providers to achieve positive client outcomes. Besides accomplishing patient needs, the theory of caring makes nurses productively and mentally better. Their ability to heal makes nurses achieve personal care outcomes such as feeling accomplished, important, and purposeful. Accordingly, nurses’ self-esteem increases due to a high feeling of importance, which makes nurses ready to care for patients always.
Despite these strengths, the theory of caring has several limitations. Firstly, it does not seem to regard the biophysical needs of the patient highly. Much emphasis is put on the psychosocial needs. Secondly, it is somewhat broad in its definition of caring. Although the five stages stimulate the nurse’s attitude to ensure that the overall patient care is improved, the theory has different patient perspectives of what is important. Promoting dignity, respect, and empowerment has been emphasized, but what the caring process must observe seems to be broadly explained to provide a clear concept of what well-being constitutes.
From an operational perspective, the theory of caring is congruent with current nursing standards and interventions. Nursing standards’ general requirement is the promotion of the highest level of quality nursing care. The nursing practice should reflect sound ethical standards too. Like the standards recommend, the theory believes in an approach [interventions] where nurses think critically to solve problems as they help patients improve their health. Assisting patients to improve their health is a manifestation of interdependence, which is among the types of interventions that characterize the care process. The theory’s central tenets show that it follows the recommendations of the basic nursing standards and interventions.
Research shows that Swanson’s theory of caring is relevant, socially, and cross-culturally. According to Ellina et al. (2020), it looks forward to a scenario where caregivers and patients develop a trusting relationship. Also, it cultivates sensitivity to self and others. Healthy relationships are the foundation of strong networks. Allowing caregivers and patients to form a strong bond ensures that the patient can get assistance during and after the engagement period. Sensitivity to others is among the basic principles of cross-cultural nursing practice. Nurses must view the nursing practice from a broader perspective, and it is encouraging that the theory enables caregivers to view practice from a social lens.
This theory is integral in nursing practice in several ways. Firstly, it promotes patient satisfaction. When caregiving is patient-centered, and caregivers value patients, caregivers will always be ready to respond to patients’ need, hence a high level of satisfaction. Secondly, the theory fosters lasting relationships between nurses and patients. It is based on the idea that nurses should be emotionally present to share feelings of the patients. This side-by-side physical presence assures patients that they are not alone, and enhances recovery due to prompt response. Thirdly, and importantly, real nursing behavior is centered on the concept of “doing for” in that nurses’ unique function is to contribute to an individual’s health or recovery. Such practices improve general health outcomes and ensure that nursing achieves its optimal goal of promoting well-being.
Swanson’s Theory of Caring Essay References
Ellina, A. D., Nursalam, N., Yunitasari, E., & Rusmawati, A. (2020). Patient Satisfaction about Nurse Caring Behavior: Based on Swanson’s Theory of Caring and Transcultural Nursing Theory. International Journal of Psychosocial Rehabilitation, 24(09). https://www.academia.edu/download/64092065/2%20patient%20satisfaction%20about%20nurse%20caring.pdf
Lillykutty, M. J., & Samson, R. (2018). Insights from Kristen M Swanson’s Theory of Caring. Asian Journal of Nursing Education and Research, 8(1), 173-177. https://ajner.com/HTML_Papers/Asian%20Journal%20of%20Nursing%20Education%20and%20Research__PID__2018-8-1-36.html
McKelvey, M. M. (2018). Finding meaning through Kristen Swanson’s caring behaviors: a cornerstone of healing for nursing education. Creative Nursing, 24(1). https://connect.springerpub.com/content/sgrcn/24/1/6#