Importance of Comfort Theory
Comfort is an important outcome for nursing care and research. Katharine Kolcaba Comfort Theory, a middle range theory helps the concepts and reflect in nursing practice. Her theory composes of three purposes these are: relief, ease and transcendence. Kolcaba also described 4 contexts in which patient comfort can occur physical, psychospiritual, environmental and sociocultural. Where in nursing practice relief as an example is when asking the patients of how they are feeling, answering questions so patient feel connected and more comfortable as possible while ease defined as contentment to lessen their discomfort as a patient/family. In the other hand transcendence indicates as a positive approach of a patient/family in physical, emotional, social and spiritual well being of nursing care. A nurse’s duty is to make sure p1atients/families are calm and to assure them that everything is alright.
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The individual in care and support nursing focuses on a person’s personal needs. Putting their needs is a priority by healthcare professionals. In nursing perspective this theory support nursing practice in a constant changes and outcomes of a health behaviors. Some nurses tend to burnout in some stressful situations at work. Comfort theory enhance how nurses/doctor overcome health care situations problems. Katharine make good emphasize how comfort may impact patients/families in their comfort needs in a holistic way.
Everyone may have experience pain in their lives reason to seek healthcare need. Katharine Kolcaba’s shows how nursing practice and teaching enhancing through time. Comfort theory focused on how nurse provide plan and action to meet the healthcare need of a patients/families. As an immigrant here in this country I can say that Canada healthcare system is way too different to Philippines. Philippines may not have free healthcare program, but still they make sure that they are doing their job to sustain patients/families needs. Everyone can relate to her theory where nursing practice and teaching enhance through time. In my experienced I used to go back and forth to the hospital for assessment and physical examination for my asthma. Philippines St. Lukes Hospital back then had the old ultrasound machine. I have seen that for almost 1 year and half. I could really say technology and nursing practices become more up to date generation by generation.
Holistic comfort theory provides conceptual framework where according to Raudonis and Acton (1997) conceptual framework is “The building of nursing models was an attempt to theorize how all nurses might be taught to organize and synthesize knowledge (relies directly) about nursing so they develop advanced clinical reasoning skills”. (p. 65). This theory can be use as a guide for nurses and nursing students to learn how to provide care that is independent and conjunction with medical practice.
Comfort Theory can be demonstrated in any aspect of healthcare including nursing practices how they handle stressful situations at work or could be how nurses met certain needs of a patients/families. Nurses’ tend to regulate certain goal they set priorities in order to sustain patient personal needs. It supports that nursing burnout may occur in a regular basis to most people: life, death and in between can be a “day in life” of a nurse (Goad et al, 2016, p. 2). For instance, some nurses may think that they do not have enough knowledge or skills to fulfill their duty as nurse. Kolcaba’s theory helps this kind of situation not only providing the patients/families need, but also help nurses to overcome this type of problem. Second type that can be demonstrated to nursing practice is nurse known as “good nurse”. What makes a good nurse? It explains that being a good nurse has been claim since the days of Mary Seacole and Nightingale, nonetheless best practice for nurses adapt its guidance relating to changing contexts where healthcare occurs (Rush & Cook, 2006, p. 382). Nursing practice can demonstrate through interventions intended to elicit positive response and measured most accurately by whole person outcomes (Kolcaba, 1994, p. 1178).
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Nursing diagnosis is a perspective where nurses focused and prioritize their certain area of the patient. Nursing diagnosis consists of planning phase, intervention phase and evaluation phase (Astle et la, 2016, p. 65). A patient who has mild anxiety have trouble concentrating and thinking more about worrying. How it relates to Kolcaba’s Theory, is when a patient suffering to a mild anxiety we should focus on the planning phase where we plan on how the patient will reduce his/her distress. We as nurses ask the patient of what we can do to help them ask questions if we need to. The more we know about the patients feeling intervention takes place where “the plan of care would be carried out” (Astle at al, 2016, p. 65). In the other hand evaluation is making judgement of what the plan result. Comfort theory provides more on personal needs of a patients/families it enhanced comfort then leads to health seeking behaviors for the patients/families and even to nurses. It provides order for nursing practice and research outcomes.
- Goad, S., & Sigma Theta Tau International. (2016). Nurse Burnout: Overcoming Stress in Nursing. Indianapolis, IN: Sigma Theta Tau International. Retrieved from ebcohost
- Kolcaba, K. (1994). A theory of holistic comfort for nursing [PDF file]. Retrieved from researchgate
- Rush. B., Cook, J., (2006). What makes a good nurse? Views of patients and carers [PDF file]. Retrieved from ebcohost
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