Pender’s Health Promotion Models

Contemporary nursing practice is becoming increasingly theory-based, as scholars learn that a comprehensive framework is necessary to address the patient’s health as a complex network of related factors. The focus on the medical aspect of health promotion, in particular, makes it less effective by restricting the effects to environments where the patient interacts with nurses directly. A multitude of models for the task has emerged in response throughout the latter half of the 20th century.

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All of them have some advantages and issues, and members of the profession must understand their differences. This essay will compare Pender’s health promotion model and the transtheoretical approach, then use the former in a theoretical scenario.

Both models share a fundamental similarity in their aim to improve the patient’s health. They also both focus on changing the person’s behavior, often in a manner that will ensure that they quit their unhealthy habits. However, according to Raingruber (2017), the transtheoretical model focuses on interventions over individuals, while Pender’s method emphasizes personal decision-making, perception of control, and definition of health. These differences, combined with the continuing relevance of convincing patients to abandon dangerous practices, ensure that both models are prominently used in nursing. The choice depends on the specific situation and the preference of the user. For this essay, the author will use Pender’s model because its effects can be quantified more easily.

Pender’s model is focused on individuals rather than communities, as it tries to affect personal beliefs without changing the environment or the group directly. As such, a population of older adults who have health issues would be the most suitable for its application. These people are aware of the existence and effects of their conditions. At the same time, they are not inpatients, and, as such, they can regulate their behavior without external attempts to intervene.

As such, members of this population are likely to have developed habits and practices that harm their health without understanding the influence. Lastly, due to their frequent contact with the clinic, nurses will have the chance to interact with them in person.

Older adults are well-known as a risk group, both due to the prevalence of health concerns that emerge with age and the barriers to health promotion that they present. Meiner and Yeager (2019) provide financial limitations and health illiteracy as potential issues that can emerge. Many older adults cannot afford the costs of preventative services that are not covered by insurance or decline due to misconceptions about their effectiveness.

Aung, Win, Maw, and Naing (2017) describe physical exercise and stress management training as effective interventions. Many older adults do not engage in sufficient activity and struggle to deal with pressure due to their frequent social isolation.

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Pender’s health promotion model is known for its simplicity and specialization in dealing with individuals rather than communities. It tries to convince the individual to change his or her behaviors because they recognize the danger of continuing their dangerous practices. As such, it is highly applicable to populations that consist of individuals such as older adults. Nurses can understand the barriers to treatment that affect them with the application of the model. They can then implement interventions to address these issues and help improve the health of the population without incurring additional costs on the patients.


Meiner, S. E., & Yeager, J. J. (2019). Gerontologic nursing (6th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier.

Raingruber, B. (2017). Contemporary health promotion in nursing practice (2nd ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett.

Aung, K. T., Win, C. M., Maw, A. A., & Naing, H. H. (2017). Health promoting behaviours of the elderly in Myanmar. Scholars Journal of Applied Medical Sciences, 5(1B), 131-138.

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