The benchmark assesses the following competency:
Benchmark: 5.1. Understand the human experience across the health-illness continuum.
Research the health-illness continuum and its relevance to patient care. In a 750-1,000 word paper, discuss the relevance of the continuum to patient care and present a perspective of your current state of health in relation to the wellness spectrum. Include the following:
- Examine the health-illness continuum and discuss why this perspective is important to consider in relation to health and the human experience when caring for patients.
- Reflect on your overall state of health. Discuss what behaviors support or detract from your health and well-being. Explain where you currently fall on the health-
- Discuss the options and resources available to you to help you move toward wellness on the health-illness spectrum. Describe how these would assist in moving you toward wellness (managing a chronic disease, recovering from an illness, self-actualization, etc.).
Prepare this assignment according to the guidelines found in the APA Style Guide. An abstract or thesis is required.
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Hello Professor good question, as a nurse, finding myself in a situation where a patient has expressed their end-of-life wishes that differ from the desires of their immediate family can be challenging and emotionally complex. Here are some steps I can take to navigate this sensitive situation:
- Act with empathy and compassion: Acknowledge the emotions of both the patient and the family members. Listen actively and attentively to their concerns and fears. Show empathy and understanding for the difficult decisions they are facing.
- Respect the patient’s autonomy: It is crucial to honor the patient’s right to make decisions about their end-of-life care, as long as they are deemed capable of doing so. Their expressed wishes should be the primary consideration in making decisions about their care.
- Communicate openly and honestly: Encourage open and honest communication between the patient, the family, and the healthcare team. Facilitate discussions where everyone can express their perspectives and concerns. My role as a nurse includes fostering effective communication.
- Involve a healthcare team: Engage other healthcare professionals, such as doctors, social workers, and palliative care specialists, in the discussion. This interdisciplinary team can help mediate the conversation and provide additional perspectives and support.
- Provide education and information: Offer the family information about the patient’s medical condition, prognosis, and the options available for end-of-life care. Educating them about the patient’s wishes and the implications of different choices can help them make informed decisions.
- Seek a consensus if possible: Encourage both the patient and the family to explore potential compromises that align with the patient’s values while also addressing the family’s concerns. It may not always be possible to reach a consensus, but fostering a collaborative approach can ease tensions.
- Consider ethics and legal aspects: If there is a disagreement that cannot be resolved, it might be necessary to involve an ethics committee or seek legal advice to navigate the situation while upholding the patient’s rights and autonomy.
- Respect confidentiality: Being mindful of the patient’s privacy and confidentiality. The patient’s wishes should not be shared with the family without their explicit consent, and vice versa.
- Provide emotional support: Offer emotional support to both the patient and the family throughout the process. This can be an incredibly difficult time for all involved, and my presence and compassion can make a difference.
- Document thoroughly: Record all discussions, decisions, and actions taken regarding the patient’s end-of-life wishes in their medical record. Documentation is essential for ensuring continuity of care and legal compliance.
Ultimately, the goal is to promote patient-centered care and uphold the patient’s autonomy while respecting the concerns of the family. Each situation is unique, and handling end-of-life discussions requires sensitivity, understanding, and collaboration with the healthcare team and the family.
Understand the Human Experience across the Health-Illness Continuum Assignment Solution
1. Experience of humankind through health-illness:
The health-illness continuum is a graphical illustration based on the concept of human wellbeing as a whole mental and emotional (Falvo and Holland, 2017). At times, people might not show any physical symptoms of the disease but still be depressed, anxious, and unhappy and continuously complain of not feeling well and can affect the wellness of the person.
The concept of the health-illness continuum:
The definition of wellness varies from person to person. Some think wellness to be the opposite of illness. To them, if they don’t have any physical illness, they are well. Some are always motivated to be active for a healthy lifestyle. The rest consists of some person who is either satisfied or dissatisfied with their current condition.
Figure: 1- graphical representation of the health-illness continuum.
The right side shows the degrees or levels of wellness, and the left side shows the degrees of illness.
The continuum states that wellness or wellbeing is dynamic and not static. It must move the patient to greater health and welfare. A person’s outlook also contributes to the state of wellness. The positive vision of a person having any disability or disease would face the right side of the continuum in contrast to a fit person who is unhappy in life and is always complaining, depressed, and anxious. This outlook is negative, and it hinders the growth of mental and emotional wellbeing whereas the positive outlook influences mental and emotional wellness to growth, awareness, and knowledge.
Importance of the perspective in caring for the patients:
This perfective is important in treating patients with hope as it contributes to the mental and emotional development of the person. With this view, the patients can be motivated to have better health and prevent any physical and emotional disease by measuring in which scale the patient lies in the continuum. It also estimates the development made by them.
2. A personal reflection on health and illness
Healthy eating, workout, exercises and our activities contribute to the wellness of our daily lifestyle. What I eat and what my actions are, together joins in the development of my physical, emotional and mental development. I am a 26years old, 5′ with a BMI of 28. I am overweight and obese. I have PCOS that is contributing more to my health issues. Due to being overweight, I have constant pain in the bones of my heel and can’t stand for a longer time. A person who experiences PCOD has a lot of difficulty in losing weight. I consume Australian cuisine, mainly having nuts, milk and protein, and some vegetables. I walk for 45mins every day and go to the gym thrice a week. There are no current changes in my weight. Sometimes it reduces a little and again hits back.
I believe my condition can only be improved with proper knowledge and hence, after doing my graduation, I have allotted myself in a Degree Nurse Program. This would provide me with all the clinical measures that can be taken to improve my condition and help to improve.
With proper knowledge, effort and hope of being a better version of myself, I believe nothing is impossible to achieve in my career and lifestyle. I am motivated to improve my condition for two reasons. Firstly my health issues would no longer persist and would help me get a better and healthier lifestyle. Secondly, I want to motivate my family and the people around me that with hard work, nothing is incurable or impossible.
My ultimate goal is to improve health and move towards the eventual mental and emotional development and make it stable. My educators in the Grand Canyon University is helping a lot by providing proper knowledge and information for being a better nurse and a better thinker, and my nurse educator of the Pioneer Healthcare Services guides me in being a professional nurse in clinical settings from a nursing student (Kaakinen et al. 2018).
Reflection of each person on the health-illness continuum is different depending upon their personal experience. Understanding where a person lies in the continuum will ultimately make him aware of his condition and push him towards better wellness.
3. Options and resources available to improve wellness:
I am overweight and obese that has to lead to several physical conditions. I experience intense pain in my heel if I stand for a long time. I have PCOD which contributes to the state of being overweight (Dean, 2016). Earlier I was unaware and didn’t have the proper knowledge to contribute in my improvement but now having knowledge from the educators of my university and clinic, I have adapted several ways like appropriate diet and exercises, that now is improving my condition. I am sure with the changes made; I will move forward in the development scale of health-illness continuum.
End-of-life care becomes a concern for elderly clients at some time. Despite implementing palliative care an spice programs, there are several causes for this tendency. Many patients in palliative care would desire to be cared for and die at home, especially patients dying of terminal cancer. Practical spiritual, legal, existential, and psychological reasons have prompted the discussion over end-of-life care. As a result of legal concerns and demands, there has been a rise in demand for end-of-life care for older patients(helpguide.org). Most times, dying people frequently wish to make legal decisions concerning advanced directives, wills, and durable powers of attorney. As a result, end-of-life care would be acceptable to allow the patient to complete the legal paperwork. Many patients may choose to reflect on the meaning of life and conduct the last understanding of their lives. This is a method of coping with unresolved psychological business in one’s life. The desire to reflect on one’s life has resulted in a rise in demand for end-of-life care. Due to factors of culture and religion, some elderly patients may like to live in a unit with their family and relatives so that they can confess their sins, follow religious traditions, and prepare for their final meeting with their maker(doi.org). As a nurse, it is my responsibility to respect the patient’s autonomy and satisfy their expectations. I will discharge a patient to get end-of-life care based on the patient’s condition. To improve the nurse-patient trust relationship and establish a healing atmosphere, I would focus on strengthening active listening and practical communication skills.
Wheatley, V. J., & Baker, J. I. (2007). “Please, I want to go home”: ethical issues raised when considering choice of place of care in palliative care. Postgraduate medical journal, 83(984), 643–648. https://doi.org/10.1136/pgmj.2007.058487
Weber, M. (2018, December 27). Hospice and palliative care. HelpGuide.org. https://www.helpguide.org/articles/caregiving/hospice-and-palliative-care.htm
(n.d.). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/aging/pdf/advanced-care-planning-critical-issue-brief.pdf
Healthcare is ever-changing due to advancements in medical technology, new research findings, evolving patient needs and expectations, and changes in healthcare policies and regulations. Reengineering healthcare is important because it can improve the quality of care, reduce costs, and enhance patient outcomes. By redesigning healthcare workflows and processes, healthcare organizations can become more efficient, effective, and patient-centered. Nursing managers and leaders play an important role in the reengineering of healthcare. Nurses have always been innovators and oversee innovations that have the responsibility of fostering and advocating for the development of concepts and processes that elevate health care (Azar, 2021). Nurse leaders can act as change agents, promoting new approaches to care delivery and advocating for the adoption of innovative technologies and practices. The position of nurse leaders has had to change in order for the present health care system to meet the demands for safe, high-quality, and patient-centered care (Helbig, 2022).
Azar K. M. J. (2021). The evolving role of nurse leadership in the fight for health equity. Nurse Leader, 19(6), 571–575. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mnl.2021.08.006
Helbig, J. (2022). Reengineering health care management. Grand Canyon University (Ed.). Nursing Leadership and Management (Ch. 5). https://bibliu.com/app/#/view/books/1000000000587/epub/Chapter5.html#page_159
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