The American Nursing Association defines nursing as “the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, alleviation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response, and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, communities, and populations” (American Nurses Association website, 2015).
The definition encompasses the main basis of nursing. The metaparadigm theories that define the practice of nursing are four basic concepts identified as nursing, person, health, and environment. These theories address the patient as a whole, the patient’s health and well-being, the patient’s environment and the nursing responsibilities. While there are several different nursing theories, these four basic nursing metaparadigms point to a holistic view of care where a person’s well-being and medical health is connected to four interactive components. (Deb Dupree; Updated July 05, 2017)
The ANA addresses the metaparadigm theories including both internal and external factors as an overall picture of our patients. As nurses we provide care to many individuals, who have their own unique set of ethics, values, morals, and beliefs. Human caring as the moral ideal of nursing is the central focus of professional practice. It involves concern and empathy, and a commitment to the client’s lived experience of human health, illness, and disease.