The Concept of Nursing Theories, Research, and Practice

The Practice, Research, and Theory in Nursing

According to Algase (2015) nursing is ‘‘the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, facilitation of healing, alleviation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response, and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, groups, communities, and populations.’’ Blais and Hayes (2011) explainsexplain that nursing practice scope is the variety of functions, activities, responsibilities and roles that a registered nurse is competent, educated and has authority to execute. NursingThe nursing practice is underpinned by guiding values and principles on the care that a nurse is to provide. The nursing practice scope is described using a method statement; who, when, why, how, where, and what. Every question is answered to give a full picture of the complex and dynamic nursing practice and its evolving membership and boundaries.

Butts and Rich (2011) on their study explains that a nursing theory is a set of definitions, assumptions or propositions, relationships, and concepts that are a derivative from nursing models and models from other fields; systematic phenomena view that defines concept’s specific inter-relationships for the purpose of predicting, explaining, and describing. The theories are developed to describe and explain nursing care, give groundwork for clinical decision making, and guide the nursing practice. Its purpose is to enhance the science through backing the current knowledge or creating new knowledge. It helps nurses to organize their ideas and thoughts as well as directingdirect them in what to do, how to do it, and when.

Nursing research is an objective, systematic phenomena that analysisanalyzes the significance of nursing. Nursing research thereby includes; all studies that concern nursing administration, nursing education, and nursing practice. Nursing research is categorized as either applied or basic research. Basic research lays its concern in the production of new knowledge while applied research is apprehensive to knowledge that will resolve immediate problems (McKenna & Slevin, 2008). The goals of nursing research are: documenting the nursing care cost effectiveness, providesproviding nursing practice accountability, ensuresensuring nursing professional credibility, and promotespromoting evidence-based practice in nursing practice.

Relationship between Nursing Theory Practice and Research

NursingThe nursing practice is centered on nursing theories which moundmould the discipline of nursing professional.professionals. McKenna &and Slevin (2008) statedstate that, nursing theories give the guidance and direction for organizing the professional nursing research, education, and practice. Nursing theories also distinguish the nursing focus from other health practitioners. They serve to guide the intervention, assessment, and evaluation in nursing practice. Nursing research and nursing theory are inter-related because the nursing theories provide a rationale to collect valid and reliable information about a patient’s health status, which is important in the practical implementation and decision making. Nursing theories also institute criteria that measure the quality of nursing practice.

According to McKenna and Slevin (2008), nursing research offers a framework that generates new ideas and knowledge for nursing theories. They also assist in noticing the gap in a particular field study. Finally, nursing research offers a systematic approach that identifies study questions, chooses variables, and interprets the finding and validation of nursing interventions. Nursing theories assist the nursing practice with standard nursing terminologies that they used while conversing with other professionals. Research without a theory leads to discreet data or information that does not increase the accumulated knowledge in the discipline. On the other hand, the theory guides the research process, generates the research questions, aids in design, interpretation, and analysis.

Importance of Nursing Theories

Algase (2015) explains that nursing theories give a framework for understanding where it examines situations. While encountering new situations, the framework forms an organization structure, decision making, and analysis. It also provides a communication structure among the nurses and other health care personnel. The theories also assist the nursing discipline in clarifying goals, values, and beliefs and, define defining the unique nursing contribution in the care of patients. When the nursing contribution focus is precise, the wider professional sovereignty and, eventually, control of practice aspect is achieved (Butts & Rich, 2011). Algase (2015) also states that nursing theories form a basis of clinical systems of information including progress notes, care plans, discharge summary, nursing orders, typology of intervention, and planning.

Importance of Nursing Research

Research is used in nursing to deliver an evidence-based care, which endorses quality health outcomes for the health care system, communities, families, and individuals. Research is known in shaping health policy in direct care within the federal, state, local or in an organization. Nurses use research in practice, teach research, and conduct research. Nursing research implements new changes in individuals long life care and develops treatments that give the most optimum care level (Butts & Rich, 2011). Its focus is to promote and develop high standard levels in; develops developing advancements that aidsaid recovery in clients, high-quality patient management for individuals with chronic illness, instillsinstilling treatments and techniques that elevate quality of life of a patientspatient with a degenerative disease, developsdeveloping standards that decreasedecreasing the number of ailments in a community, promotespromoting a healthy style of living and preventspreventing the onset of preventable diseases and., easeseasing the transition of those at the point of death.

Practice Change

The ability of the nursing practice to change is crucial to an organization success, whichwhere up to date, the oncology changing practice is very vital (Bishop, 2014). For a change to occur, certain factors are required in an organization;. Some of these factors include a culture that rewards and promotes change, a functional and effective leadership structure, and an agreed on practice direction. Any change idea should fit in a general direction concerning where the practice heads. Bishop (2014) explains that effective leadership is another key for change where the leader should move, explain, and support the organization to commit to change. Cummings (2016) describes that 95% of any successful change is contributed by active leadership. Other factors may include: dealing with resistors, an organizationorganization’s culture, and readiness to change.

The implementingImplementing change will be influenced by; fostering a team culture, communication, positive reinforcement and feedback, and identifying and empowering champions. Due to the increase in chronic illnesses, ring cost of treatment, and large aging population, there has been a change in primary health care. Therefore, weresearchers have developed a change practice model using quality improvement intervention data that led to a sustainable improvement in practice. The change has increased the utilization of the eight elements of primary health care.

Case Study

According to Blais and Hayes (2011), Florence NightingaleNightingale’s environmental theory defines nursing as “the act of utilizing the environment of the patient to assist him in his recovery.” This approach involves the initiative of nurses in configuring the appropriate environmental setting for the gradual patient level restoration and, the patient’s external surrounding factors; life. Life is a psychologicpsychological and biologicbiological process and their development.

The nurse visiting Isabella should greet her, and then start a conversation. The first step would be aerating the room by opening the window and the doors to make sure there is adequate air circulation. The nurse should create a rapport with Isabella by greetings followed bygreeting her and following it up with a smile to show she ismake her comfortable. From nightingale’s different environmental aspects, Isabella’s food, room cleanliness, and ventilation are adversely affected. There was a full litter bin in the chamber next to the changing table.  The nurse saw two half- empty 4-oz formula bottles on the changing table, which was next to the full litter box. The litter box can cause a direct contact contamination between the litter box and the drinking formula milk.

On the same changing table, there was an empty box of baby wipes and three soiled diapers. Isabella was placing the baby’s excreta next to her feedings which are another source of contamination. The nurse in charge of the home visit should educate Isabella in a way that seems she is helping and not belittling or ridiculing her kind of life. The nurse can offer to hold the baby, andbut before holding her, she should start by washingwash her hands. While holding the baby, she should inform Isabella to do some cleaning up as she baby’s sits. Her three-year-old daughter who is playing with a stuffed cat wasis instructed to hold the baby. Isabella requires knowledge of hand washing, waste disposal, general cleanliness, and ventilation.

Nightingales Understanding On Ventilation and Environment Sanitation

Nightingale has emphasized on the importance of viewing beyond the patient to the social environment they livedlive. Isabella livedlives in a low and social and economic condition that influences how they live.she lives with her family. The full bin alongside the changing table can be a source of infection off irritant.. Most probably, economically disadvantaged individuals have low education levellevels limited to primary and secondary schools. This further illustrates the lack of knowledge or ignorance of Isabella in relationship to her condition. Handling a newborn requires a highly clean and well-kept home.

Nightingale’sNightingale, on her theory, identified five environmental factors: pure water, clean air, lighting, sanitation and fresh air. In these five factors, Isabella was experiencing all the five elements. The nurse should guide Isabella on purifying air to make it fresh like the outside air by opening the windows and doors as well as the fan. The stuffed cat inis the worseworst contaminant because it produces fur that may be sniffed by the new-born or the three-year-old. The light wasis also essential in the room as ultraviolet rays kill germs. DisposeThe mother should dispose of waste for the baby and the litter box to ensure a clean environment. Pure water is also required by the theory which reducesto reduce contamination against communicable diseases.

During her visit, the nurse should make sure she is more informal to create a healthy relationship. She should not lookshow an amused on her facial expressionsexpression regardless of the circumstance.circumstances. As the visiting nurse, it is kind not to use official language, but a friendly one which makes sure the client is comfortable. The nurse should be empathetic like stating, ’it is not easy to bring up two kids almost the same age, but a lot of efforts are required to manage.’ Change should be directed as a positive change, not one where the client feels belittled.

Significance of Nightingale’s Theory

Even after 200 years, the concepts, in of Nightingale’s theory, remains remain important because it integrates the environmental, nursing, and the patient’s care. The nursesNurses are given the mandate to manipulate the environment for the patient to balance on and promote the wellbeing of the patient. According to Nightingale, the nursenurse’s goal is to place a patient in the best condition to allow nature to act. (Blais & Hayes, 2011)). In today’s world, a lot has happened regarding the environment likein the form of deforestation and pollution; that increases, which increase health discomforts in patients. I agree with her that unsanitary condition greatly facilitatesconditions facilitate poor health. Most of the environmentally caused diseases are preventable and manageable, and Nightingale’s concept remains useful in the prevention, treatment, and diagnosis of ailments.


Algase, D. (2015). Considering the Importance of Theories in Relation to Defined Populations. Research And Theory For Nursing Practice, 29(3), 175-176.

Bishop, T. (2014). Get involved in the changes. Primary Health Care, 24(4), 5-5.

Blais, K. & Hayes, J. (2011). Professional nursing practice. Boston: Pearson.

Butts, J. & Rich, K. (2011). Philosophies and theories for advanced nursing practice. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

Cummings, J. (2016). New framework supports practice nurses to lead change. Practice Nursing, 27(6), 266-267.

McKenna, H. & Slevin, O. (2008). Nursing models, theories and practice. Oxford: Blackwell Pub.

Nightingale, F., McDonald, L., & Nightingale, F. (2009). Florence Nightingale. Waterloo, Ont.: Wilfred Laurier University Press.

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