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Patient Advocacy: Concept Analysis

1820 words - 7 pages

Patient Advocacy: Concept AnalysisNursing is a challenging, rewarding and exciting career. The nurse's role is not limited to changing bandages, giving needles and offering support, as the past has indicated. The role of the modern nurse is one of advocate, caregiver, teacher, researcher, counselor, and case manager. The caregiver role includes those activities that assist the client physically and psychologically while preserving the client's dignity (Kozier, Erb, & Blais, 1997, p.129). In order for a nurse to be an effective caregiver, the patient must be treated as whole. Patient advocacy is another role that the modern nurse assumes when providing quality care. Advocacy is defined as the active support of an important cause, supporting others to act for themselves or speaking on behalf of those who cannot speak for themselves.Literature ReviewThere is significant information written in the nursing literature about patient advocacy; however, not all that has been written is in the form of empirical evidence (Schroeter, June 2000). Concept analysis is a method of inquiry that produces a clearer meaning of words. Beth Rogers (2000) believes that concept analysis is the foundation for expanding nursing knowledge and developing nursing theory. The concept of patient advocacy has been referenced and studied in many articles because the definitions and principles of advocacy been loosely defined, leading to ambiguous interpretations (Bennett, 1999). The perioperative nurse's role as a patient advocate has been described as: to inform patients of their rights in a particular situation, to support patients in decision they makes, and to intercede when there is a need to protect the patient's rights (AORN, 2003).Client advocacy is the application of skills, information, resources and action to speak out in favor of causes, ideas, or decisions to preserve and improve the quality of life for those who cannot effectively speak for themselves. Tyson (1999, p 64) defines patient advocacy as "the act of educating and supporting clients so they can make the best decisions possible for themselves. Nurses frequently encounter clients that feel powerless, vulnerable to assert their own rights. The role of client advocate is there to protect the rights of clients. Advocacy has become a concept in nursing practice that is misunderstood and often overlooked by nurses practicing in the role of the caregiver. Professional registered nurses have a duty to protect their patients and have an ethical obligation to act in any instance in which patients may be in danger. The aim of this analysis is to explore operational definitions of the theoretical concept of advocacy in the perioperative setting.AttributesAdvocacy is a contemporary nursing issue comprising three essential attributes, respect for patient value, education of patients, and respect for patients' individuality. During the perioperative period there are several events that will necessitate the nurse...

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