The future of the discipline of nursing depends on social and political factors as well as research and theory development. The use of theories by clinical nurses with varying levels of clinical expertise is rapidly increasing. In the past, the nursing profession has relied on the authority of educators, sociologists, psychologists, physiologists and anthropologists to provide answers to nursing problems. The purpose of this paper is to critically analyze a clinical-related practical concern that will impact the nursing professional environment. The United States is lagging behind other nations of the world in fully integrating midwifery into its health care system. “While midwives ...view middle of the document...
The theory of reasoned action, which emphasizes that social norms and personal attitudes influence behavior, was also drawn from the concept of development. Young and middle-aged adulthood is the time in the life cycle when many persons are involved in careers and child rearing. The everyday life and demands leave little for focusing on health until there is a crisis. The strengthening of family support for self-care is important at this time because the adults need to accept responsibility for role-modeling and teaching children competent self-care. Increasing the family knowledge and expertise of health-promotion skills, how and when to use health care resources is an invaluable lesson that can be taught in the family environment. The attractiveness of this concept for nurse-midwives lies in its focus-health promotion and disease prevention with the emphasis on health promotion. The teaching of self-care attempts to explain how individuals make decision about their own health care. Pender emphasizes that the likelihood of engaging in the health-enhancing behaviors occurs as a result of mindset and perceptual factors which are then affected by a number of modifying factors. The theorist identifies certain factors that have a direct bearing on behavior as “primary motivational mechanisms”, and is responsible for the acquisition and maintenance of health-promoting behaviors. (Pender, 1975) These include:
Importance of health
Perceived control of health
Definition of healthy
Perceived health status
Perceived benefits of behaviors
Perceived barriers to health promoting behaviors
Each of these factors is further explained by its effect in terms of empowering individuals to engage in health promoting behaviors. Specifically, patients who place a high value on health are more likely to pursue it. The patient’s motivation to desire health is positively correlated with their perception of their ability to change their health. Also, a patient’s belief that a behavior is achievable is said to influence the occurrence of that particular behavior. In addition, attempting certain behavior changes will be influenced by the patient’s definition of health. Likewise, the patient’s perception of their current health status will influence the odds that health-enhancing behaviors will be initiated. If the gains are perceived as achievable, patient will be more likely to either begin or to continue health-enhancing behaviors. Finally, patients are to be less empowered to attempt health-enhancing behaviors if the belief is present that the behavior is difficult or the necessary resources unavailable. Barriers to learning can also result from personal values, beliefs, attitudes, lack of motivation, poor self-concept or inadequate comprehension. In addition to the comprehending factors, which Dr. Pender believes have direct effect on expression of behavior, the theorist...