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Nurse Patient Relationship Essay

2421 words - 10 pages


Nurse-patient relationship

According Cutliffe and McKenna (2005), research, theoretical and educational literature on interpersonal relations between nurses and patients has proliferated since the 1960s.  This has generated a range of divergent accounts of what the nurse-patient relationship (NPR) ought to be, how this should be achieved, and how the NPR is constituted in practice. I have chosen the concept of nurse-patient relationship because this relationship is viewed as the essence of nursing practice (Moyle 2003). This essay’s aim is to demonstrate my understanding of the concept of the nurse-patient relationship through utilising relevant literature and relating this to a ...view middle of the document...

Anna was a forty-four year old white female who was admitted as a formal patient to an acute ward where I was on placement. Formal patients are those patients who are not a section, they come to hospital voluntarily. Anna was married with four children .Her problems started when her husband died and as a result she could not cope with grieving for the husband and looking after the children. Anna started to drink alcohol excessively consequently her mental state and physical well-being deteriorated. Anna’s children were, unfortunately, taken away by the Social Services because of Anna’s alcohol related behaviour. She had several seizures due to alcohol and, also experienced panic attacks, and headaches. On admission, Anna came with her relatives who had been exposed to considerable strain. She was subjected to comments, criticism and reproach by the family. The family had delayed bringing Anna to hospital because they felt guilty about psychiatric hospitals.
I identified depressive illness, excessive alcohol intake and ailing physical health as Anna’s three most significant problems, all of which are interrelated. Anna’s loss of a husband caused her to feel depressed, she then started to drink excessively, which led her to lose her children to Social Services and also contributed to her ailing physical health. All these contributed to Anna’s mental state. According to Rogers (1951) self-concept contributes to, and is greatly affected by experience, the greater the incongruence between the organisimic experience and the self as experienced in the world, the more likely it is for the person to experience tension.
Pepalu (1953) stated that a patient’s expectations and preconceptions about people are based on the feelings they have had in their relationship with people who were significant earlier in their life. To the psychiatric patient, nurses symbolise, or are an illusionary reminder of these earlier figures. It was of paramount importance therefore to endeavour to gain Anna’s trust (in light of her involvement with Social Services and her loss of loved ones.) from the beginning in order to allow her to ventilate her feelings. This is echoed by Baughan and Smith (2008) who cited that establishment of a good rapport is a necessary springboard for assessment. I found this to be a good practice as Anna was very co-operative and easy to engage with throughout the assessment process. Rogers (1951) stated that, “all individuals have within themselves the ability to guide their own lives in a manner that is both personally satisfying and socially constructive”. In a particular type of helping relationship, we free the individuals to find their inner wisdom and confidence, and they will make increasingly healthier and more constructive choices”. I learnt from this that nurses are there to facilitate the patient to make informed choices by building a therapeutic relation. This brings about the concept of empowering the patient.

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