Critical Thinking : Quality Patient Care

Decent Essays
Critical thinking is a skill that many nurses learn alongside experiences. Situations requiring critical thinking will arise, and whether or not one is familiar with it, it cannot be ignored. Critical thinking helps to determine an appropriate course of action to attain the best possible outcome for the patient and the situation. There are many descriptions of critical thinking, but what it really boils down to is quality patient care (Kearney-Nunnery, 2012). By utilizing critical thinking an action plan is developed, and in nursing, doing nothing is not a choice for quality patient care. In an article written for teh journal Nursing Education Perspectives, it was noted that registered nurses need a strong skill set that includes critical thinking in order to approach clinical situations (Newton, 2013). This skill set comes with time and experience. Although many situations arise throughout a day, one in particular stand out. A 93 year old female, "Jane" was admitted to the rehabilitation floor with right hip pain. The first assessment revealed higher blood pressures running in the 160s/lower 100s, pulse was in the 90s, and respirations 20, the rest of the vitals were unremarkable with no fever and oxygen saturations at 100% on room air. Patient denied headaches, dizziness or nausea, no pain in the chest, just pain in her hip and legs. By reviewing the medication list it was noted that there were two anti- hypertension pills prescribed: metoprolol and lisinopril. They
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