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Applying The Theory Of Comfort In Nursing Practice

1438 words - 6 pages

Nursing practice can be complex due to the fact that people in general can be vastly different in their wants, needs, and expectations. However, one thing that has been found to be true amongst people is their desire for comfort. One middle-range theory that is essential in nursing practice today is the theory of comfort. This theory emphasizes the importance of comfort within the health care setting. Comfort increases the overall experience of the patient and their family, it increases their ability to heal and cooperate, and it also positively impacts health care and medical facilities. This research shows how the theory of comfort needs to be implemented across all medical fields, especially nursing, if professionals want to provide the highest quality of care for their patients.
Kolcaba (2001) states that nursing is the process of observing and determining the comfort needs of patients. Assessment may be objective based solely on observation or subjective based on asking the patient whether or not they are comfortable. The nurse is expected to create and execute appropriate nursing interventions as well as evaluate the patient’s comfort after the interventions. The research believes this is crucial in health care settings when first coming in contact with a patient. People are constantly looking for comfort both within and outside of health care. Being in a situation that can be confusing, overwhelming, painful, or scary only increases the necessity for comfort. Drouin, Kolcaba, and Tilton (2006) further support this notion when doing research on examples of poor quality of care of a group of patients. Such examples included patient and family complaints, skin breakdown, medication errors, injuries, and secondary complications to what they originally entered the medical facility for. From these issues the researchers developed goals to increase the experience people had within health care. The goals were as follows; expand comfort to increase the satisfaction of patients, include comfort in education material given to patient and their family, develop unit-based research within the framework of comfort by distributing questionnaires, improve patient and family access to health care informational material, revise criteria to focus on enhancing comfort, introduce pet therapy and therapy garden, implement a patient-focused model for decision making, help patient and their family navigate the health care system, and discharge by appointment. All of the goals listed strive to bring comfort to patients. The research believes this is necessary for positive patient outcomes.
Wright (2011) expresses how knowledge can also provide comfort to people in medical settings by explaining that people had increased levels of comfort when they were in well-known areas and participating in procedures they were familiar with. One of the issues within the medical field is people are not familiar with what they are experiencing. Confusion and lack of control can...

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