Human beings are viewed as open energy fields with unique life experiences. As energy fields, they are greater than and different from the sum of their parts and cannot be predicted from knowledge of their parts. Humans, as holistic beings, are unique, dynamic, sentient, and multidimensional, capable of abstract reasoning, creativity, aesthetic appreciation and self-responsibility. Language, empathy, caring, and other abstract patterns of communication are aspects of an individually high level of complexity and diversity and enable one to increase knowledge of self and environment. Humans are viewed as valued persons, to be respected, nurtured and understood with the right to make informed choices regarding their health.
The person component of the metaparadigm focuses on the receiver of care. However, the person connection also includes family members and other groups important to the patient. The care structure considers the person’s spiritual and social needs as well as health care needs. The resulting health outcome is attributed to how the person interacts with these physical and social connections. The premise is that the person is empowered to manage his health and well being with dignity and self-preservation with positive personal connections.
Environment is the landscape and geography of human social experience, the setting or context of experience as everyday life and includes variations in space, time and quality. This geography includes personal, social, national, global, and beyond. Environment also includes societal beliefs, values, mores, customs, and expectations. The environment is an energy field in mutual process with the human energy field and is conceptualized as the arena in which the nursing client encounters aesthetic beauty, caring relationships, threats to wellness and the lived experiences of health. Dimensions that may affect health include physical, psychosocial, cultural, historical and developmental processes, as well as the political and economic aspects of the social world.
Health, a dynamic process, is the synthesis of wellness and illness and is defined by the perception of the client across the life span. This view focuses on the entire nature of the client in physical, social, aesthetic, and moral realms. Health is contextual and relational. Wellness, in this view, is the lived experience of congruence between one’s possibilities and one’s realities and is based on caring and feeling cared for. Illness is defined as the lived experience of loss or dysfunction that can be mediated by caring relationships. Inherent in this conceptualization is each client’s approach to stress and coping. The degree or level of health is an expression of the mutual interactive process between human beings and their environment.
Nursing is an academic discipline and a practice profession. It is the art and science of holistic health care guided by the values of human freedom, choice, and responsibility. Nursing science is a body of knowledge arrived at through theory development, research, and logical analysis. Nursing and other supporting theories are essential to guide and advance nursing practice. The art of nursing practice, actualized through therapeutic nursing interventions, is the creative use of this knowledge in human care.
Nurses function autonomously and use power to shape the profession and empower clients through caring partnerships and other transactions. Within this framework, power is defined as the capacity to participate knowingly in the nature of change and is characterized by awareness, advocacy, choice, freedom to act intentionally, healing and involvement in creating changes.
In health care we need to clarify values for both the consumer and provider in society. We recognize that although the majority of our society states that health is a right for everybody, not a privilege, not everyone has health care.
As a profession nursing is responsible for clarifying our values on a regular basis. Just as society places a value on health, society also determines the value of nursing in the provision of health. The values that nurses support need to be communicate clearly to those making the policies that affect the health of our society.
Metaparadigm Miller-Keane encyclopedia and dictionary of medicine, nursing, and allied health
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