The Power of Caring: How Empathy Boosts the Nursing Profession


Table of Contents

Health Sciences And Medicine

Evident in Excelsior’s college nursing philosophy, mission, and organizations framework the school has firm believe in the relationship that exists between man, health, and the environment in the study of nursing. As a profession, the school focuses on ensuring that it provides opportunities for individuals through inspiring them to pursue their goals in in life and deliver quality within the society. As they become leaders in life, EC focuses on producing professionals that are able to implement both safe and quality care, in different settings in order to positively influence the outcomes for individuals and populations (Minnaar, 2002). The integration of man, health, and the environment is the provision of care is among the most important perspectives of nursing

In today’s healthcare system, much emphasis is placed on the importance the concept of caring has on nursing. As a practice profession and a discipline, nursing calls for a holistic health care system primarily guided by the existing values of choice, responsibility and human freedom. Nursing calls for clinical judgment and critical thinking aimed at providing evidence based care to specific individuals, aggregates, communities, and families so as to achieve the optimal level of patient wellness under different settings and contexts. All these revolve around the caring as a primary concept in nursing (Fawcett, 2007).

Defined caring is the feeling individuals have and the exhibition of concern and empathy towards others. Even with this definition, the main question is the relationship between “caring” as a concept and nursing. Nursing calls for altruism and attractiveness, which are elements that act as the primary motivations of the whole nursing concept including nursing as a career (Fawcett, 2007). Human caring is the central and moral ideal of nursing as a professional practice. The ideology revolves around the concern, the empathy and the commitment nurses are mandated to give to their patients and the relationship that exists between illness, disease, and wellness (Revels, Goldberg, & Watson, 2016). 

The role of caring in nursing revolves around the importance it has on practice and the relationship it has on the paradigm of man, environment, health, and nursing in today’s healthcare environment. In today’s nursing practices, it is evident that the three elements are closely related to the provision of care to individuals. Nursing primarily focuses on the general promotion of health, through prevention of illnesses, caring for the sick, and the restoration of health (Lachman, 2012). Man, environment, and the health are the core pillars within this. Human beings (man) are viewed as holistic beings, which are unique, multidimensional, and dynamic, and individuals capable of creativity, abstract reasoning, self-responsibility, and aesthetic appreciation.

Human beings in relation to nursing are the transmitters of caring itself; nursing as a profession calls for caring which individuals caring can only depict for their clients. Human beings also relate to the patients or the individuals being cared for in nursing. Human beings in this are valued individuals that need to be cared for, nurtured, understood, respected, and assisted. In nursing, the human is viewed to be different and greater than from the sum of his or her individual parts (Fawcett, 2007). This, in turn, means that caring as a major concept of nursing is closely related to human beings, as they are both the giver and the receivers of care itself. Another important element is the fact that nursing calls for “human care, human care transactions” which seek to enhance, protect and preserve human dignity and worth. Caring in this perspective involves values, commitment and will to care, and the knowledge of caring actions and consequences (Valentine, Ordonez, & Millender, 2014)

Caring also closely relates to the environment and health, which are also major concepts in the theory of human caring. The environment in this provides the values that help individuals determine how they behave and what goals they should strive to achieve (Fawcett, 2007). Nurses in their professional activity should strive to provide quality care to their patients. The environment is the general landscape of human social experience. Nursing helps create a positive attitude, which in turn acts as a way of coping with the existing environment. The whole ideology of nursing is the improvement of health, which is closely associated with the degree of congruence between the self as experienced and as perceived. Caring in nursing helps bring about improved physical, social and mental functioning, the absence of illness and increased efforts to reduce the existing illness which is a core principle in nursing (Valentine, Ordonez, & Millender, 2014).

As evident caring is the core principle of the whole concept of nursing. The definition of nursing, calls for caring for individuals through the use of different perspectives such as the increase of relationships between the caregiver and the receiver (nurse and the patient). Caring, as depicted in Jean Watson’s theory, relates to the meta-paradigm concepts of human beings, environment, health and nursing itself as it calls for improvement of an individual’s mental, physical and the social functioning ensuring the well-being of each and every individual in the society.

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  1. Fawcett, J. (2007). The metaparadigm of nursing: Present status and future refinements. Image: the Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 84-87.
  2. Fenfgeld, C. D. (2008). Meta-synthesis of caring in nursing. Journal of Clinical Nursing.
  3. Lachman, V. D. (2012). Applying the ethics of care to your nursing practice. Medsurg Nursing, 112.
  4. Minnaar, A. (2002). A framework for caring in the human resource management process of nurses. Journal of Clinical Nursing.
  5. Revels, A., Goldberg, L., & Watson, J. (2016). Caring Science: A Theoretical Framework for Palliative Care in the Emergency Department. International Journal for Human Caring, 206-212.
  6. Valentine, K., Ordonez, M., & Millender, E. (2014). Transforming practice through embracing caring in nurse-managed centers. International Journal of Human Caring, 52-64.
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