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Jean Watson’s Theory of Human Caring

Free «Jean Watson’s Theory of Human Caring» Essay Sample

Janet Wilkinson works as a community health nurse in Portland, Oregon, and she makes a home visit to the old homebound man named Jim Smith. The patient has a number of medication bottles, but it does not appear that he knows what to take and when. When Janet asks the man about the prescribed medications, Jim says he has trouble reading the labels and opening the bottles. Therefore, the patient is not always sure which exactly medicine to take and what is the appropriate time for that.

Jean Watson is an eminent nurse theorist and professor, who has dedicated most of her life to the productive nursing practice and helping the needy people. Her theory of human caring is applicable to the aforementioned scenario. The theorist considers human caring as the core element of nursing profession; therefore, nurses should endeavor to preserve caring within their educational, clinical practice, and research. Caregivers are encouraged to assist the needy patients showing respect, even reverence, while treating them in a professional manner.


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Caring provided by medical workers, according to Jean Watson’s theory, focuses on promoting changes in themselves, surrounding people, and environment. Specifically, the theorist urges every nurse to develop and sustain productive and authentic relationship that will emphasize trust and medical assistance (Smith & Parker, 2014). The spiritual and physical approaches are directed at the establishment of healing environment, where the respect for human dignity will be of the highest priority. In her studies, Watson also associates caring with the vulnerability (Alligood, 2014). Particularly, the professor believes that in order to succeed in the profession, caregivers have to be sympathetic towards their patients. Otherwise, medical workers can become impersonal while performing their professional activities.

Jean Watson’s theory can be easily utilized to guide and enhance the nursing practice. The transformation of the health care system has drastically altered nurses’ workloads and duties. Nowadays, healthcare providers in various settings have to handle the patients’ complexities as well as the acuteness of  particular illness. Despite hardships that nurses face in the ever-changing environment, caregivers have to preserve their practice. Therefore, the caring theory developed by Jean Watson can serve as a valuable tool for reaching the set objectives. Only caring can help to enrich the relationship between nurses and patients in a broader environment.

In order to lead and improve nursing practice, a caregiver has to be conscious while promoting wholeness, healing/health, integrity, and dignity. Watson’s theory concentrates on caring in the environment where nurses can make a right choice (Black, 2014). Self-control, personal growth, healing, and knowledge are the key principles of this process. Only interpersonal caring can bring the desired outcome in the professional activity. The nurse creates a favorable environment for a client to participate in the caring process, which enhances the patient’s self-determination and confidence. It means that the client can freely use his/her knowledge, set realistic goals, and make adequate health decisions.

Furthermore, the application or reference to Jean Watson’s caring theory in the practice aids in promoting the sense of compassion in nursing that helps to alleviate suffering of patients and their families as well as contributes to the professional self-actualization. In reality, the eminent nursing theorist Jean Watson in her work focuses on both patients and caregivers considering that caring is relevant to them equally. Moreover, the application and promotion of caring values are crucial for human physical health and positive mental well-being.

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The theory of human caring developed by Jean Watson can be effectively applied to the mentioned scenario involving the old homebound man named Jim Smith who seeks professional medical assistance from Janet Wilkinson due to the inability to take the prescribed medications correctly. In such case, the nurse’s responsibility is to explain to the patient in detail what drugs and when he should take. Janet has to reach harmony in Jim’s body, mind, and spirit. Therefore, Jim must be sure that the caregiver will not leave him alone, but help to distinguish the medicine as well as comprehend the medical terms. Moreover, the man lost a piece of paper where the clinician had prescribed him what drugs and when to take. In this situation, Janet has to be calm and attentive while communicating with Jim; the woman should also instill hope and harmony in the man.

Caring is vital for both the nurse and the patient. First of all, it will stimulate Jim’s quick recovery. Second, the nurse will get motivation, and consequently, reach the professional development. The nurse has to provide caring with passion. In the discussed scenario, the establishment of a transpersonal caring and productive relationship will be of top priority. In addition to the explanation of medicines and other unclear terms, Janet Wilkinson needs to preserve and enhance Jim’s dignity as well as assure him of the further support.

Watson’s theory can be put into practice in various nursing situations due to its usefulness and easy application. Sympathy, focus on moral values, and respect are the major constituents of the primary and acute care. The transpersonal teaching can also bring a positive outcome in one’s professional activity and improve the patient’s well-being. The caring model suggested by Watson calls for the scientific and artistic research embracing the spirituality and humanity. According to Masters (2015), body, mind, and spirit are the core aspects that need to be considered in nursing profession. It is crucial to understand one’s self and assist patients regardless of their status, age, and gender. Caring occurs within a relationship based on trust, dignity, respect, and professional assistance. The application of the caring theory is dynamic, which is also advantageous due to the changes constantly occurring in the medical facilities worldwide.

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