NRS 430 How has nursing practice evolved over time?

NRS 430 How has nursing practice evolved over time?

NRS 430 How has nursing practice evolved over time?

Dorothea Orem’s self-care deficit theory is a notable contribution to nursing practice, and I am keen to understand how she developed this theory and refined her ideas over time. I know that a conversation with Orem would be a great opportunity to gain insights into her experience as a nurse and how it influenced her theoretical work. My main goal in speaking with Orem would be to improve my patient care by helping them achieve better self-care. Orem’s work on self-care has had a significant and lasting impact on nursing theory, and speaking with her could provide valuable insights into how nursing theory is developed and applied in practice. By understanding the development of her self-care deficit theory, I can better understand how to apply this theory to my own work as a nurse. Furthermore, I am interested in learning more about the challenges that Orem faced when developing her theory and how she overcame them. I would also like to know how Orem’s self-care deficit theory has been received by the nursing community and how it has influenced nursing practice over time. Additionally, I would like to ask Orem about the relationship between patient empowerment and self-care, and how nurses can encourage patients to take an active role in their own care. This would help me to better engage with my patients and support them in achieving better outcomes. Overall, a conversation with Dorothea Orem would be a valuable opportunity to gain insights into nursing theory and its practical applications. It would help me to improve my patient care and to better understand the relationship between patients and their ability to care for themselves. Orem’s work has had a lasting impact on the field of nursing, and I am excited to learn more about her experiences and insights.

If I had the opportunity to sit down and talk to one of the key leaders in nursing history, I would choose Clara Barton. She was a nurse who made history by founding the American Red Cross in 1881. (Whitney, 2018). Clara earned the nickname of “Angel of the battlefield,” as she bravely provided nursing care during 1861 to the Civil War soldiers injured on the battlefield. I would love to sit and talk with Clara because I would ask her to tell me stories about the time she spent with those soldiers, and I would love to listen to her experience during that time. I can only imagine the things Clara saw, and the experiences she had during that time. Something about the Civil War era interests me very much, and to be in the mist of the war and saving the lives that could be saved, while holding the hands of the ones she knew were over, must have been such a humbling experience. I would ask Clara how she found the courage to do the difficult things she did during that time, and if she was scared. I would also ask Clara about how she formed the American Red Cross, and where she found the courage to take that leap of faith to organize such an amazing group of people and did she experience any fear of failure. I would expect to gain strength and possibly courage from even being able to sit and talk with such an influential individual as Clara.  


Whitney, S. (2018). History of professional nursing. [E-book]. Dynamics in Nursing: Art & Science of Professional Practice. Grand Canyon University. 

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If I could have sat and talked to one of the nursing theorists it would be Faye Abdellah. The reason for her interest in the profession is profound . She witnessed an explosion and could not have done anything to help. She vowed to herself she would never be hopeless again and decided to pursue the Nursing profession. I am very impressed with the level of intelligence she showcased for someone in that Era especially for recognizing the importance of research. Developing Abdellah’s Typology of 21 Nursing Problems was formidable. It has always been my belief that treating the disease  should not be the focus but  treating the person providing holistic care and this is what the typology fosters. Patients come in presenting with whatever symptoms in the hospital but there are factors outside of what they present that are affecting them, maybe they have kids at home and no babysitter, some maybe be on the verge of becoming homeless. When we overlook these things and focus on only what the patient came in with , we do not send a whole patient home and we do not meet all of their needs. As a consultant and educator with seminars around the world she made the profession more visible. I admire her for furthering herself academically despite all deterrents. She was a well educated person; she had three degrees from Columbia University: a bachelor of science degree in nursing in 1945, a master of arts degree in physiology in 1947, and a doctor of education degree in 1955 (Craddock, 2013). She could have been anything but she chose to remain in this profession.If i could ask her one question right now it would be what kept her going. Today we have everything at our fingertips, education at our disposal, and access to so much technology wise, better pay, more resources.But i find it almost impossible to accomplish one quarter of what she  has  accomplished. Maybe I might just be inspired by what motivated her.


Abdellah, F.G., Beland, I.L., Martin, A., & Matheney, R.V. Patient-centered approaches to nursing (2nd ed.). New York: Mac Millan. 1968.

Craddock, J. (2013). Encyclopedia of world biography supplement. Detroit, Mich.: Gale.

Nursing has its roots in laypeople, the military, and religious orders. Recognizing the need for caregivers began in 300 B. C. (Grand Canyon University (GCU), n.d.). The training was elementary, and quality of care was not the focus. It had little organization and no respect socially, as it had become work for “undesirables” in society and extremely poorly paid (GCU, n.d.). Florence Nightengale’s work changed this perception, gaining respect from the military and the government, beginning nursing as we know it today. Nightengale was a nurse during the Crimean War (1853 to 1856) and observed a connection between dying patients and their environment. This led her to develop the first nursing theory in 1860, the environmental theory. The demand for trained nurses inspired her to create the first educational model for nurses, founding the Nightengale Training School for Nurses in 1860 in London, England (Cohen,1984). Nightengale’s experiences also inspired her to write and publish the first nursing textbook in 1859, titled, What It Is and What It Is Not (Whitney, 2022).

The shortage of nurses continued with the Civil War (1862 to 1865). Having no formal training, Clara Barton volunteered as a nurse during the war. She founded the American Red Cross (Whitney, 2022). Congress was convinced by military leaders to recognize trained nurses, leading to the formation of the Army Nurse Corps in 1901 and the Navy Nurse Corps in 1908. Nurses in the Nurse Corps and the American Red Cross did tours of duty during WW I (1917 to 1919) (Whitney, 2022). There has been an increasing need for nurses due to patients’ needs becoming more complex as medical technology to diagnose, monitor, and treat disease and other medical ailments. Changing healthcare demands have changed the role of nurses, requiring continuing education. The Boston School for Nurses was founded in 1873 after the Nightengale Training School for Nurses (1860) and was the first hospital-based program in the United States (Whitney, 2022). Formed in 1935, the American Association of Collegiate Schools of Nursing actively encouraged university nursing programs (Keeling & Ramos,1995).

Each level of nursing has its standards of care. An associate degree (ADN) prepared nurse is focused on clinical skills and bedside patient care. In contrast, a baccalaureate degree (BSN) prepared nurse focuses on clinical skills, critical thinking, evidence-based practice (EBP), and management and leadership skills. The increasing need for nurses is ongoing and, in contemporary nursing, is best satisfied by a BSN implementing EBP backed by verified current medical research (Whitney, 2022). When questions arise with a BSN, recent medical research is available to support that particular nursing practice, helping to support leadership decisions and the best patient outcomes.


Cohen, B. (1984). Florence Nightengale. Scientific American250(3),128-137.

Grand Canyon University. (n.d.). Nursing timeline

Keeling, A. & Ramos, M. C. (1995). The role of nursing history in preparing nursing for the future. Nursing and Health Care16(1), 30-34.

Whitney, S. (2022). History of professional nursing. (2nd ed.). Dynamics in nursingArt & science of professional practice. Grand Canyon University.

Nursing has been around since the 1800s and constantly evolving because of modern technologies. Nursing came from women helping the sick to advancement into a profession. Nurses are now more educated and competent as they take on leadership roles. Many nurses are in the roles as registered nurses, advance practitioners, and nurse managers. Some are now involved in the computer technology “informatics.”

One of the key leaders of nursing during this era was Florence Nightingale. In the 1860s Florence Nightingale made a great impact on nursing. She took care of sick patients and nurtured them back to good health making significant changes (Whitney, 2020). She illustrated findings and brought awareness of the social determinants for health, wellness, and illness (Allen, 2020). She was instrumental in the efforts that brought clean water and public sanitization to the forefront. She also emphasized the importance of good nutrition and hygiene to promote wellness (Allen,2020).

Other pioneer that paved the way were Clara Barton, Dorothea Lynde Dix, etc. Clara Barton was perceived as the Victorian heroin for many years because of her contributions. One of her well-known contributions was during the civil war. She went to the battlefield to care for the wounded soldiers, (Allen,2020). She made significant changes in the health of many wounded soldiers. This caused nursing to be recognized by congress for trained female nurses to be members of the US military (Whitney, 2022). When the war ended she travelled to Europe where she gained insight on the red cross theory. Through this knowledge Clara Barton became the founder of the International red Cross (Whitney, 2022). Dorothea Lynde Dix was instrumental in advocating for the poor and mentally ill. She was known for creating the first asylum in America during this era (Whitney, 2022).

These great revolutionary pioneer women of nursing have evolved, revolutionized, and publicized the profession. The advancement of education caused nurses to no longer be looked at as women helping the sick. Today, nursing is known as a professional organization. Nurses are leaders, managers, doctors, and many more. Thanks to the great pioneers who believed that nurses should take on leadership roles to improve health care (Whitney, 2020).


Whitney, S. (2022). History of professional nursing. (2nd ed.) Dynamics in Nursing: Art & 

Science of Professional Practice. Grand Canyon University.  

Allen, D. H. (2020). The Nightingale Legacy. Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing24(5), 1-2. DOI: 10.1188/20.cjon.s2.5-6