Respond to this post giving some of the account of Virginia Henderson input in nursing.

Respond to this post giving some of the account of Virginia Henderson input in nursing.

Virginia Henderson, also known as the “Modern Nightingale” shaped the nursing profession and developed a definition of nursing that is currently used today. Henderson is considered one of the most important women of the 20th century in the development of nursing theory. Henderson’s Need theory emphasized the role of nursing and the importance of focusing in on the basic human needs. Her theory utilizes Maslow’s Hierarchy of basic human needs when prioritizing patient care. She stated that the nurse’s role should consist of fourteen components when delivering effective patient care. These components consisted of; breathing, eating and drinking, elimination of bodily waste, maintaining desirable posture, sleep and rest, dressing, body temperature maintenance, proper grooming, ensuring a safe environment, communication, faith, accomplishing tasks, recreational activities, and teaching or learning. Henderson believed that in the absence of the patient’s ability to perform these tasks independently, it was the responsibility of the nurse to perform such tasks for the patient, until the nurse to patient relationship was terminated or no longer needed. Smith (2015) provided an excellent example of a patient’s concern that he would no longer be able to get dressed independently post anesthesia and was worried about positioning as he would not be able to turn himself after a prolonged amount of time with surgery. The nurse was able to comfort the patient in stating that she would ensure that those duties were performed, until he was able to regain the strength to provide them himself. The ultimate goal of Henderson’s theory was to improve patient functionality and mentoring nurses on how to meet those basic human needs during acute illness. One could say that Henderson’s theory is a reactive approach compared to the American Nursing Association’s (ANA) definition of nursing. The ANA has a more proactive approach in nursing stating that nurses should focus on protection and promotion while optimizing an individual’s health (American Nurses Association, 2017). Although slightly different in approach, both definitions focus on the compassion the nurse must have while caring for a patient whether it be nursing the individual back to health or death. As a redundant answer thus far in discussion posts following week one, Henderson’s theory is used every day in nursing in all fields. Most acute care setting require rounding every hour where the basic needs are addressed upon every round. Some healthcare facilities refer to this as the three P’s (Pain, Potty, Positioning). Along with offering those to patients, nurses assess the temperature of the room, offering warm blankets if needed, ice water or a snack of the individual’s choice. Grooming is also a daily task in acute care settings and ensuring the patient has the proper amount of daily exercise although therapy is involved in the patient’s care plan is also primarily the nurse’s responsibility. Although Henderson’s theory may not be known to textbook standards, these are lessons, and teaching that are taught to student nurses and carried out over one’s career ensuring that nurses care for their patients giving them the most respect and dignity as possible during their illness.

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