Running Head: PERSONAL NURSING PHILOSOPHY 1
PERSONAL NURSING PHILOSOPHY PAPER 1
Personal Nursing Philosophy Paper
Nursing philosophy described as a personal definition, I provide a comprehensive discussion of personal philosophy related to accountability, compassion and professionalism that drives my personal practice. Life and career experiences are used to demonstrate application of philosophy showing growth of my career that still brings a special light to my life.
Keywords: nursing, philosophy, personal
Nursing has always felt more than a career, it was a path chosen due to my passion for using knowledge and skills to help those who are unable to help themselves. My philosophy today stems from values instilled by my family as a child; trustworthiness, respect, compassion, the things that drove me to nursing and continue to drive me as I provide care to my patients, families, and community. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11, New International Version).
Compassion, respect, and advocating for patient rights; while providing a healing environment is the core of what a nurse does. By holding myself accountable, maintaining professionalism, and compassion the last 14 years as a nurse have given me more than I could have ever imagined.
Most of my career I have been reminded that my job is to assess, diagnosis, plan, implement, and evaluate. I understood my responsibilities, just always viewed my career as so much more. Nursing promotes wellness and health, while preventing further illness or injury is a definition that has been engrained in my mind; what about all the steps in between? So many moving parts must be accomplished before I can promote wellness, one of the biggest learning curves in my career was on a pediatric trauma respiratory floor, not only dealing with things I hadn’t seen since nursing school; near drownings, Cystic Fibrosis, ventilated patients. It was something so simple, yet it took me by surprise, I was no longer dealing with a patient that needed to understand and make decisions while the family supported them; this was dealing with a whole new aspect of building rapport with the patient’s parents. My initial experience was with first time parents of a 1 year old, who suffered a near drowning they blamed themselves for. This was the hardest connection I had to build by first informing them of possible outcomes and status, having them understand it was an accident and their guilt needed to be set aside so they could make the best decisions for their child leading to the best possible outcome. They eventually came around, we prayed a lot and I was able to provide what they needed to feel better. It took me a while to reach my goal of therapeutic nursing, since the connection developed was delayed by outside factors, once we developed trust a friendship grew that I still cherish to this day. I view nursing as contributing what is needed to get the best possible outcome and I have learned over the years, the most important contribution is my positive outlook on life, eagerness, and ability to offer hope to those in need.
Professional Relationships and Practice
My nursing practice has always strived to provide the best care possible and help promote a positive team environment. I was lucky enough before I graduated nursing school to have 5 years of experience under my belt as a medical corpsman in the US Navy, this training taught me to follow the rules but also speak my mind in a respectful manner. I was also lucky to only come across one horrible doctor that later apologized for his mistake. This is not the case for everyone and some colleagues I had; would beg me to mention their concerns, I refused and would walk them over to the medical professional and make an introduction; once this was done their confidence grew and they became advocates for their patients.
My practice is based on accountability, compassion, and professionalism. As a new nurse I was constantly learning, even if I knew some of the information it was evolving and my job to make sure I was aware. Even on the most chaotic of days on the floor I was able to do my job and be there for my patients, if there was something I didn’t understand or needed I made sure to reach out and get the help or proper tools for the job.
I worked in a teaching hospital, so my relationships were built with residents some were open to questions other not so much. During my care for a patient receiving morphine, she developed nonstop hiccups, and no one could figure out why. She was tested for diaphragm issue and nothing, they decided to prescribe a muscle relaxant that unfortunately didn’t help, she was in so much pain and in tears. I decided to do some research and came upon a rare side effect from morphine that caused hiccups, so hopeful I went to the resident and asked him what he thought, he wasn’t too happy basically said it was ridiculous and he had never had a patient with that side effect. I knew I had to continue advocating for my patient and asked what if she is the exception? Would he please be willing to change her pain mediation to something else? After a long discussion with his colleagues he prescribed Dilaudid and you guessed it, her hiccups went away. Moments like these reminded me to always speak up, even if I thought it wasn’t possible. As my career continued and unique cases appeared I would think back to my hiccup patient fondly and remember anything is possible.
Main Components of Personal Practice
My personal practice components and what they mean to me:
Accountability is important because often we have lives of other people in our hands, keeping this in mind I must still perform at my best, follow protocols, and maintain self-control in stressful situations. My accountability also includes bettering myself by continuing my education and the training that will improve my craft.
Compassion is a huge part of nursing, it allows me to care and empathize for my patients allowing me to stand up for those that can’t speak for themselves. Compassion has allowed me to provide the best care to anyone who crosses my path without discrimination.
Professionalism is necessary, to receive respect, you must provide it. My knowledge, how I perform my job, and how I conduct myself towards my patients and colleagues is one of the necessary components to foster a healing environment.
I’m reminded of a time that my nursing philosophy was put to the test, I was caring for 2-year-old with right lower lobe pneumonia, he was receiving round the clock antibiotics and not showing improvement yet. During my shift he was do for another dose, when I walked into the room the father advised me he would not be accepting the dose until they figured out what was wrong with their son, after a long conversation that explained his diagnosis and how long antibiotics usually take to work I begged him to please let me provide the medicine he still refused, so I departed and contacted the treating physician. Once they treating physician arrived it was an all out scream match about how he didn’t know what he was doing, and his son was not receiving the best care, during the shouting match I get pulled aside by my charge nurse; she states the mother is beside herself and wants the incompetent nurse off her sons’ case. Shock took over my body, the mother stated why would I listen to her husband he was not in charge. I expressed to my charge nurse he was the only parent in the room and had been identified and patients’ father via wrist bands. I decided to return to the room and apologize to the mother, showing compassion for her situation; she wasn’t mad at me she was angry at her husband for making that decision and frustrated her child was so sick. She calmed down and apologized to me for overreacting, the patient received his medication, and all was back on track for the best outcome. I realized during the small crisis that I was willing to take accountability, show compassion, and maintain my professionalism for the best possible outcome for my patient. I still reference this case when I think what the best way is to reach my goal.
My personal nursing philosophy is necessary for me to provide the best care possible. Without compassion I would never establish relationships necessary for positive outcomes, without accountability and professionalism I would not have made it in my career; to start a master’s program and write this paper today.
I hope that my current philosophy of nursing will continue to evolve as it should, but my values, compassion, and professionalism will always be the core of my foundation.
Holy Bible, New International Version (1984). Grand Rapids: Zondervan House.