Caring Is Viewed as the Essence of Nursing

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Caring is viewed as the essence of nursing, discuss... Introduction Lenninger (1984) described caring as the “essence of nursing”. Over the years many nursing theorists and researchers have examined the concept of caring and written extensively on the importance of caring in nursing. Going back to the foundation of modern nursing Nightingale (1859) wrote that nursing’s most important work is caring. Despite the wealth of ground covered in these works the term “care”, is rarely defined as a theoretical concept in its own right and is often used interchangeably with the term nursing (Gaut, 1983). In this article the author will explore the existing theoretical perspectives on caring. The author will attempt to show how nursing and caring are…show more content…
Duke & Copp (1992) likened caring to the string in a necklace; it holds all the beads together. However if it can be argued by Paulson (2004) that there is an increase in client dissatisfaction then that begs the question; are caring behaviours and attitudes decreasing amongst the modern workforce of nurses? Paulson (2004) tells us that many nurses are surprised that service users perceive they receive unsatisfactory care. These nurses are sure that they are providing care in the precise manner that they were taught in nursing programs focused on caring for clients. Paulson (2004) has argued that there is a difference between taking care of and caring for service users. Remen (1980) points out that these two different approaches are often indistinct and when they are misunderstood, problems arise. Nettina (2000) informs that nursing care concentrates on objective, physical care concerned with assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementation and evaluation. Paulson (2004) comments that taking care of clients objectively is necessary, but that this mode of care subtly encourages nurses to depersonalise the individuals in question. Bruce, Bowman & Brown (1998) reported that high satisfaction figures recorded by clients were directly linked to a caring and compassionate workforce. Caring attitudes can be taught and should be taught to nurses where a caring deficit exists

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