The application of various nursing models in practice is not only a possible technique of care but a necessity caused by the uniqueness of each patient and the obligation to provide qualified assistance in accordance with a specific situation. One of such techniques is the nursing theory of health by Margaret Newman who suggests calling her practice the model expanding consciousness. The essence of this method assumes a special relationship between the nurse and the patient when the latter receives all the necessary support and learns to look at the temporary circumstances of his or her life in a new way. “Every person in every situation, no matter how disordered and hopeless it may seem, is part of a process of expanding consciousness,” as Smith and Parker (2015) quote the author’s explanation of her theory (p. 298). This model allows inspiring hope in patients and helps them to find support in difficult life situations.
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Using the Theory of Health in Practice
This theory can be applied in different contexts, but one of the primary areas of its use is probably nursing in severe cases when patients experience strong anxiety caused by illnesses, pains, and other problems. At the same time, according to Endo (2017), “both patients and nurses will grow even in extremely difficult situations” (p. 50). It means that severe morale can be transferred to medical personnel, and the task of experienced employees, in this case, is not to give in to despondency and try to encourage those who need it. The basic principle of the theory is support, regardless of how morally suppressed this or that patient is. As Macharia, Jelagat, and Juma (2015) note, the model assumes that appropriate behavior aimed at expanding consciousness and focusing on the goal with the help of qualified personnel allows for success in recovery and gives people hope for better health. Therefore, the application of this theory is essential in departments with hard cases.
The Possibility of Using the Theory in the Oncology Department
One of the nursing situations where the use of Newman’s theory will be relevant is care in the oncology department. According to Fujiwara and Endo (2017), aid and support are required not only for patients but also for their loved ones since a serious illness affects the morale of all family members. The situation when a person with the diagnosis of cancer does not want to continue to live and constantly speaks of suicidal thoughts is quite typical for such departments. In this case, the task of nurses is both in physical and psychological help. As Younas and Parveen (2017) remark, education should be part of the intervention so that cancer patients could know that their disease is not a sentence, and appropriate measures can help in treatment. Such support will contribute to changing the consciousness of those who fall into despair, give them hope for improvement, and allow having a new look at the situation.
Applying Newman’s nursing theory makes it possible to help patients psychologically and give them hope in difficult situations when life circumstances in a new hospital environment worsen morale. The use of the model contributes to expanding the consciousness of those who are desperate and helps to establish trusting relationships. The theory under consideration is particularly relevant in oncology departments where nursing support is important so that patients could not experience severe anxiety and fall into depressive states.
Endo, E. (2017). Margaret Newman’s theory of health as expanding consciousness and a nursing intervention from a unitary perspective. Asia-Pacific Journal of Oncology Nursing, 4(1), 50-52. Web.
Fujiwara, Y., & Endo, E. (2017). A patient with cancer and her family in caring partnership based on Margaret Newman’s theory of health as expanding consciousness. Asia-Pacific Journal of Oncology Nursing, 4(3), 265-268. Web.
Macharia, K. S., Jelagat, R. R., & Juma, M. D. (2015). Applying Margaret Newman’s theory of health as expanding consciousness to psychosocial nursing care of HIV infected patients in Kenya. American Journal of Nursing, 4(1), 6-11. Web.
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Smith, M. C., & Parker, M. E. (2015). Nursing theories and nursing practice (4th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: F.A. Davis.
Younas, A., & Parveen, S. (2017). Finding patterns of meaning: Margaret Newman’s theory of health as expanding consciousness. Creative Nursing, 23(4), 207-214. Web.