Nursing Discussion: Culture and Caring Theories

NR 501 Week 6: Culture and Caring Theories

Nursing Discussion: Culture and Caring Theories

Jean Watson’s theory of human caring mostly resonates with my psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP) practice.  The theory explains that nursing entails disease prevention, health promotion, caring for the sick, and health restoration (Nikfarid et al., 2018).  Watson proposed that holistic health care is fundamental to caring in nursing practice.  Besides, Watson argued that caring in nursing restores life energies and increases individuals’ capabilities.

Watson’s theory integrates the nursing paradigm through the concept of human being, health, environment/society, and nursing.  Nikfarid et al. (2018) point out that the Watson theory places a great emphasis on a caring and healing environment, which can be offered by a nurse.  Watson defines a person as a being whose wholeness is worthy and deserves to be respected, assisted, and cared for.  The internal and external elements that can assist an individual in actualizing their inner power of self-healing are termed the environment.

  Health promotion and disease prevention are elements of the Watson theory that I identify with.  As a PMHNP, I will have a role in promoting mental health and helping individuals in the community to prevent mental health diseases.  As a result, I understand that I will need to apply the scientific research process of assessment, planning, intervention, and evaluation in promoting health and preventing diseases (Pajnkihar et al., 2018).  A PMHNP has the role of assessing and identifying mental health concerns in the population they serve, reviewing the health problem, and developing a plan that will guide the health promotion and disease prevention plan.  Watson’s theory helps to meet CLAS standards to advance health equity by focusing on nursing care that is responsive to a patient’s values, religion, norms, and culture.  This type of caring behavior by nurses contributes to patient satisfaction and improves their well-being (Pajnkihar et al., 2018).

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Nursing Discussion: Culture and Caring Theories References

Nikfarid, L., Hekmat, N., Vedad, A., & Rajabi, A. (2018). The main nursing metaparadigm concepts in human caring theory and Persian mysticism: a comparative study. Journal of medical ethics and history of medicine11, 6.

Pajnkihar, M., Štiglic, G., & Vrbnjak, D. (2018). The concept of Watson’s carative factors in nursing and their (dis)harmony with patient satisfaction. PeerJ5, e2940.

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Which of the culture and caring theories most resonates with you for your practice as an NP? How does the theory integrate the nursing paradigm?  What parts of the theory do you identify with? How does the theory help to meet CLAS standards to advance health equity?

Please answer each question. Use apa format and one of the following references as well as another that you find within the last 5 years.

Purnell, L. (2018). Models and theories focused on culture. In J. B. Butts & K. L. Rich, Philosophies and theories for advanced nursing practice, 3rd ed. (pp. 565-599). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett

Watson Caring Science Institute. (2018). Core concepts of Jean Watson’s Theory of Human Caring/Caring Sciences. Retrieved from

Duffy, J. (2018).Theories focused on caring. In J. B. Butts & K. L. Rich, Philosophies and theories for advanced nursing practice, 3rd ed. (pp. 545-559). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett

Which of the culture and caring theories most resonates with you for your practice as an NP?

Watson’s Theory of Human Caring is defined as a spiritual dimension in the thought of self, the body, mind, and spirit as a whole that combines scientific knowledge and interpersonal caring skills as one unity (Rossillo et al., 2020). Watson’s Theory of Human Caring also emphasizes the self-transcendence and self-actualization of the nurse’s caring experiences as being an integral part of a patient’s successful healthcare outcomes, thus also being a part of building an authentic relationship between nurses, patients, and patients’ families. Thus, these concepts of Watson’s Caring Theory, are an integral part of treatment for a mental health patient, which is why this theory resonates the most with my future practice as a mental health nurse practitioner. Watson’s Theory of Human Caring provides a theoretical foundation for advanced nursing practice as the 10 Caritas interventions are an integral discipline to nursing (Rossillo et al., 2020).

How does the theory integrate the nursing paradigm? 

Nursing is an essential discipline in healthcare and it is a crucial role in a patient’s healing process to promote a patient’s healing, nursing care should focus not only on treating a patient’s illnesses or medical conditions but also on Watson’s Theory of Human Caring for patients as human beings who have both biopsychosocial and spiritual needs and desires (Wei et al., 2019). Watson’s Theory of Human Caring integrates the nursing paradigm through four main concepts of nursing such as a person, human, health, and environment (Nikfarid et al, 2018). Watson’s Theory of Human Caring has also been integrated into various patient care delivery settings such as hospitals, primary care offices, facilities and etc. (Wei et al., 2019).

What parts of the theory do you identify with?

The part of Watson’s Theory that I identify the most with is the emphasis on caring and healing the environment, which are the internal and external factors that can help a patient process through the power of inner self-healing. As an advanced practice nurse, I am the external factor of the environment who can provide assistance and care for my patient by providing care through the 10 Caritas Processes including the aspects of love, empathy, trust, and teaching/learning experiences all of which will promote holistic nursing (Nikfarid et al, 2018).

How does the theory help to meet CLAS standards to advance health equity?

The United States Department of Health and Human Services defines The National CLAS (Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services) Standards as a set of 15 action steps intended to advance health equity, improve quality, and help eliminate healthcare disparities by proving a blueprint for individuals and health and healthcare organizations to implement culturally and linguistically appropriate services ( Watson’s Theory of Human Caring meets the CLAS standards to advance health equity as it underlines the key concept of treating the patient and not just the medical or health conditions through the 10 Caritas where the focus is on the three main elements of the carative factors, the transpersonal caring relationship and the caring occasion/caring moment, which all help to eliminate any cultural or healthcare disparities and provide individualized cultural sensitive holistic are in the respect to positive patient-centered outcomes (Aviles Gonzalez et al., 2019).



Aviles Gonzalez, C. I., Galletta, M., Melis, P., Contu, P., Watson, J., Finco, G., & Jimenez Herrera, M. F. (2019). Cultural adaptation and psychometric validation of the Caring Efficacy scale in a sample of Italian nurses. PloS One14(5), e0217106–e0217106. to an external site. to an external site. to an external site.

Nikfarid, L., Hekmat, N., Vedad, A., & Rajabi, A. (2018). The main nursing metaparadigm concepts in human caring theory and Persian mysticism: a comparative study. Journal of Medical Ethics and History of Medicine11, 6–6. to an external site.

Rossillo, K., Norman, V., Wickman, M., & Winokur, E. (2020). Caritas Education: Theory to Practice. International Journal for Human Caring24(2), 106–120. to an external site. to an external site.

Wei, H., Fazzone, P. A., Sitzman, K., & Hardin, S. R. (2019). The Current Intervention Studies Based on Watson’s Theory of Human Caring: A Systematic Review. International Journal for Human Caring23(1), 4–22. to an external site.

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I enjoyed reading about your take on Kristen Swanson’s theory of caring and healing. It speaks about the importance of the five caring processes of maintaining belief, knowing, being with, doing for, and enabling. As a hospice nurse, I have to try and put myself in the patient and family’s situation in which I am dealt at times. This can be hard at times when people have different cultures. Not long ago, I had a patient who was in the hospital actively dying from cancer. His sister, who was my LPN instructor 20 years ago, has a different cultural belief than I do. She was having a very hard time coping with his impending death. I had to “be with” her at that moment and understand that because she was a member of the Church of Christ, if the patient was not baptized by being submerged in water (no sprinkling of water allowed), she felt like he would end up in Hell, and she could not emotionally handle this. She refused to let me get the hospice chaplain in the room as the chaplain is a female and her religion and culture do not allow females to be in authority positions. The patient was in a hospital at the time and the RN who was his floor nurse that day was insisting that she start administering Morphine for his pain and shortness of breath. The sister had an argument with the nurse and told her that she was not going to start giving her brother morphine until he was baptized. The nurse told the sister that because she was not his power of attorney, she did not get to make that decision. I was the hospice nurse stuck in the middle of this fight. I helped to enable the sister by asking her to call her pastor in and asking the floor nurse to hold off on giving the morphine until the pastor arrived. She agreed to wait 30 minutes until he arrived. After he arrived, the patient did agree to be baptized, and even though the floor nurse was not one bit happy about it, the hospital staff had to transport him downstairs to the physical therapy department to be baptized in the whirlpool. I am very surprised that he lived through the transport, but after it was over, he was taken back to his room where the morphine was started. He passed away very peacefully the next day. According to Swanson’s theory, I had to meet that patient and his sister where they were in their journey and put my own beliefs and feelings aside. The sister and I are both of the Christian faith, but she is a member of the Church of Christ and I was raised Baptist. There are some very distinct differences in the methods of baptism that are permitted in each religion. Although I felt that as long as he was saved, being sprinkled with water would be the same in the eyes of God as being submerged, she did not feel this way. I had to set my own beliefs aside to help comfort the lady and her family. After his death, she sent me a message thanking me for being so supportive of her during that difficult time in her life.

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