Virginia Henderson As a patient receives treatment and is on the road to recovery, it's important that the patient is able to take

care of him or herself after being released from medical care. To that end, nurses should be caring for the patient while, at the same time, be helping the patient become more independent and reach goals and milestones on the road to health. Virginia Henderson's Need Theory addresses this issue and helps nurses help patients so that they can care for themselves when they leave the healthcare facility. Biography of Virginia Henderson Virginia Henderson was born on November 30, 1897 in Kansas City, Missouri, and was the fifth of eight children in her family. In 1921, Henderson graduated from the Army School of Nursing at Walter Reed Hospital in Washington, D.C. In 1932, she earned her Bachelor's Degree and in 1934 earned her Master's Degree in Nursing Education, both from Teachers College at Columbia University. Henderson died on March 19, 1996. Career of Virginia Henderson After graduating from the Army School of Nursing, Henderson worked at the Henry Street Visiting Nurse Service for two years. In 1923, she started teaching nursing at the Norfolk Protestant Hospital in Norfolk, Virginia. After earning her Master's Degree, she stayed on at Teachers College as a faculty member, where she remained until 1948. After 1953, Henderson served as a research associate at the Yale University School of Nursing. Henderson received Honorary Doctoral degrees from the Catholic University of America, Pace University, the University of Rochester, the University of Western Ontario, and Yale University. In 1985, Henderson was presented with the first Christianne Reimann Prize from the International Council of Nurses. She was also an honorary fellow of the United Kingdom's Royal College of Nursing. The same year, she was also honored at the Annual Meeting of the Nursing and Allied Health Section of the Medical Library Association. Henderson is well known for her definition of nursing, which says, "The unique function of the nurse is to assist the individual, sick or well, in the performance of those activities contributing to health or its recovery (or to peaceful death) that he would perform unaided if he had the necessary strength, will or knowledge." Virginia Henderson's Contribution to Nursing Theory: Nursing Need Theory Henderson's Need Theory emphasizes the importance of patient independence so that the patient will continue to progress after being released from the hospital. Henderson described the role of the nurse as one of the following: substitutive, which is doing something for the patient; supplementary, which is helping the patient do something; or complementary, which is working

or satisfy the curiosity that leads to normal development and health and use the available health facilities. the environment. This will help ensure that the patient has fewer setbacks during recovery from the illness or injury. Henderson identifies three major assumptions in her model of nursing. Eliminate body wastes. 6. Her emphasis on basic human needs as the central focus of nursing practice has led to further theory development regarding the needs of the patient and how nursing can assist in meeting those needs. For those nurses who work in rehabilitation. needs." Finally. For more detailed information: Need Theory The Nursing Need Theory was developed by Virginia Henderson and was derived from her practice and education. Keep the body clean and well groomed and protect the integument. 2. 7. The fourteen components of Henderson's concept are as follows: 1. Henderson's goal was not to develop a theory of nursing. Move and maintain desirable postures. and will help the transition into self-care be smoother since a nurse will be helping and supervising along the way until the patient goes home. The theory emphasizes the importance of increasing the patient's independence so that progress after hospitalization would not be delayed. 9. Eat and drink adequately. discover. Play or participate in various forms of recreation. and . Sleep and rest. 13. and it will be the patients who benefit from it. or opinions. 8." though it is not stated explicitly. The first is that "nurses care for a patient until a patient can care for him or herself. health. Maintain body temperature within normal range by adjusting clothing and modifying environment. The second assumption states that nurses are willing to serve and that "nurses will devote themselves to the patient day and night. 10. Worship according to one's faith. Learn. The four major concepts addressed in the theory are the individual. She categorized nursing activities into fourteen components based on human needs. 11. Henderson's theory is one that can be easily used every day. fears. it is also to help patients be able to care for themselves when they leave the healthcare facility.with the patient to do something. Work in such a way that there is a sense of accomplishment. Communicate with others in expressing emotions. While a nurse's job is to care for patients. 3. Select suitable clothes-dress and undress. 12. but rather to define the unique focus of nursing practice. All of these roles are to help the patient become as independent as possible. Breathe normally. 4. 5. the third assumption is that nurses should be educated at the college level in both sciences and arts. Avoid dangers in the environment and avoid injuring others.

These components show a holistic approach to nursing that cover the physiological. . Maintain body temperature within normal range by adjusting clothing and modifying the environment. Sleep and rest. The tenth and fourteenth are psychological. The twelfth and thirteenth components are sociological. 13.nursing. individuals have basic needs that are components of health. sociological. Move and maintain desirable postures. 5. The environment also includes individuals in relation to families. fears. such as age. and social. For the individual. dress and undress appropriately. These components are: Breathe normally. and spiritual components. That is. Keep the body clean and well groomed and protect the integument. Henderson's definition of nursing states: "I say that the nurse does for others what they would do 1. psychological. 3. All external conditions and influences that affect life and development. spiritual. 4. or satisfy the curiosity that leads to normal development and health and use the available health facilities. 2. The eleventh component is spiritual and moral. According to Henderson. Worship according to one's faith. According to Henderson's model. as well as the curing of diseases. 8. good health is a challenge because it is affected by so many different factors. Avoid dangers in the environment and avoid injuring others. and the individual considers the biological. 7. discover. The theory's definition of health is based on an individual's ability to function independently as outlined in the fourteen components. Work in such a way that there is a sense of accomplishment. Select suitable clothing. There are fourteen components based on human needs that make up nursing activities. specifically addressing occupation and recreation. The environment is made up of settings in which an individual learns unique patterns for living. They may require assistance to achieve health and independence. Play or participate in various forms of recreation. needs. 6. Eliminate body wastes. cultural background. 9. or assistance to achieve a peaceful death. Eat and drink adequately. Communicate with others in expressing emotions. emotional balance. This theory presents the patient as a sum of parts with biophysical needs rather than as a type of client or consumer. and others. Basic nursing care involves providing conditions in which the patient can independently perform the fourteen components explained in the model. 10. 12. psychological. or opinions. Learn. The first nine components are physiological. The theory minimally discusses the impact of the community on the individual and family. 11. Nurses need to stress the promotion of health and prevention. mind and body are inseparable and interrelated.

" The nurse has the responsibility to assess the needs of the patient. and the knowledge.for themselves if they had the strength. Henderson explains in The Nature of Nursing that the role of a nurse is "to get inside the patient's skin and supplement his strength will or knowledge according to his needs.php . help him or her meet health needs. The nurse should be an independent practitioner able to make independent judgments as long as he or she is not" The nurse is expected to carry out a physician's therapeutic plan. or making a prognosis. but individualized care is result of the nurse's creativity in planning for care. But I go on to say that the nurse makes the patient independent of him or her as soon as possible. and provide an environment in which the patient can perform activity unaided. Retrieved from http://nursing-theory. prescribing treatment. since those activities are the function of the physician. the will.

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