Theoretical Framework of Nursing Practice


  • As by the INTERNATIONAL COUNCIL OF NURSES (ICN, 1973) as written by Virginia Henderson: The unique function of the nurse is to assist the individual, sick or well, in the performance of those activities contributing to health. Its recovery, or to a peaceful death that the client would perform unaided if he had the necessary strength, will or knowledge.
  • Help the client gain independence as rapidly as possible.
Conceptual and Theoretical Models of Nursing Practice
  • Developed the first theory of nursing.
  • Focused on changing and manipulating the environment in order to put the patient in the best possible conditions for nature to act.
  • Introduced the Interpersonal Model.
  • She defined nursing as a therapeutic, interpersonal process which strives to develop a nurse-patient relationship in which the nurse serves as a resource person, counselor and surrogate.
  •  Defined nursing as having a problem-solving approach, with key nursing problems related to health needs of people; developed list 21 nursing problem areas
  •  Developed the three elements – client behavior, nurse reaction and nurse action – compose the nursing situation. She observed that the nurse provide direct assistance to meet an immediate need for help in order to avoid or to alleviate distress or helplessness.
  •  Described the Four Conservation Principles.
    1. conservation of energy
    2. conservation of structured integrity
    3. conservation of personal integrity
    4. conservation of social integrity
  •  Developed the Behavioral System Model.
    1. Patient’s behavior as a system that is a whole with interacting parts
    2. how the client adapts to illness
    3. Goal of nursing is to reduce so that the client can move more easily through recovery.
  •  Conceptualized the Science of Unitary Human Beings. She asserted that human beings are more than different from the sum of their parts; the distinctive properties of the whole are significantly different from those of its parts.
  • Emphasizes the client’s self care needs; nursing care becomes necessary when client is unable to fulfill biological, psychological, developmental or social needs.
  • Nursing process is defined as dynamic interpersonal process between nurse, client and health care system.
  • Stress reduction is a goal of system model of nursing practice. Nursing actions are in primary, secondary or tertiary level of prevention
  •  Presented the Adaptation Model. She viewed each person as a unified bio-psychosocial system in constant interaction with a changing environment. The goal of nursing is to help the person adapt to changes in physiological needs, self-concept, role function and interdependent relations during health and illness.
  •  Introduced the notion that nursing centers around three components: person (core), pathologic state and treatment (cure) and body(care).

  • Conceptualized the Human Caring Model. She emphasized that nursing is the application of the art and human science through transpersonal caring transactions to help persons achieve mind-body-soul harmony, which generates self-knowledge, self-control, self-care and self-healing.

  • Introduced the Theory of Human Becoming. She emphasized free choice of personal meaning in relating to value priorities, co-creating of rhythmical patterns, in exchange with the environment and contranscending in many dimensions as possibilities unfold.
  • Developed the Transcultural Nursing Model. She advocated that nursing is a humanistic and scientific mode of helping a client through specific cultural caring processes (cultural values, beliefs and practices) to improve or maintain a health condition