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The Conservation Model

Myra Estrin Levine

Myra Estrin Levine was a private duty nurse (1994), a civilian nurse in the U.S. Army(1945), a
preclinical instructor in the physical sciences at Cook Country (1947 to 1950).
In 1987, she became a professor Emerita, Medical Surgical Nursing, at the University of Illinois at
Chicago.
Levine received numerous honors, including charter fellow at the American Academy of Nursing.
And was the first recipient of the Elizabeth Russel Belford Award for excellence in teaching from
Sigma Theta Tau.
Both the first second editions of her books, Introduction to Clinical Nursing, received American
Journal of Nursing Book of the Year awards.
In January 1992 she was awarded an honorary doctorate of of humane letters from Loyola
University, Chicago.
After her retirement she remained active in theory development and encourage questions and
research about her theory.
Levine died on March 20, 1996 at the age of 75.
Major Concepts and Definition
The three major concepts of the Conservation model are:
1.

Wholeness or Holism

2.

Adaptation

3.

Environment

Wholeness or Holism

Levine based her use of wholeness on Eriksons description of wholeness as an open system.
Levine qoutes Erikson, who states, Wholeness emphasizes a sound, organic, progressive
mutuality betwen diversified functions and parts within an entirerity, the bounderies of which
are open and fluent. Levine believed that Eriksons definition set up the option of exploring the
parts of the whole to understand the whole. Integrity means the oneness of the individual,
emphasizing that they respond in an integrated, singular fashion to environmental challenge.

Environment

Levine also views each individual as having his or her environment, both internally or externally.
Nurses can relate to the physiological and pathophysiological aspects of the patient. Levine uses
bates definition of the external environment and suggests the following three levels.
1.

Perceptual

2.

Operational

3.

Conceptual

These levels give dimension to the interactions between individuals and their environments.
The perceptual level includes aspects of the world that individuals are able to intercept and
interpret with their sense organs. The operational level contains things that affect individuals
physically, although they cannot directly perceive them, things such as microorganism. At the
conceptual level, the environment is constructed from cultural patterns, characterized by a
spiritual existence and mediated by the symbols of language, thought, and history.

Conscervation Principles of Levine

Consevation

Conservation is from the Latin word conservasio, which means to keep together. Consevation
describes the way complex systems are able to continue to function even when severely challeged
Through conservation, individuals are able to confront obstacles, adapt accordingly, and maintain their
uniqueness. The goal of conservation is health and strength to confront disability as the rule of
conservation and integrity hold in all situations in which nursing is required. The primary focused of
nursing is keeping togther the wholeness of the individual. Although Nursing interventions may deal with
one particular conservation principle, nurses must also recognize the influence of the other
conservation principle. Levines model stresses nursing interactions and interventions that are intended
to promote adaptation and maintain wholeness. Nursing care is based on scientific knowledge and
nursing skills.

Conservation of Personal Integrity

Self worth and a sense of identity are important. The most vulnerable become patients. This begins
with the erosion of privacy and the creation of anxiety. Nurses can show patients respect by calling them
by name, repecting their wishes, valuing personal possesions, providing privacy during procedures,
supporting their defenses and teaching them. the nurses goal is always to impart knowledge and
strenght so that an individual can resume a private lifeno longer a patient, no longer dependent. The
conservation of personal integrity includes recognition of the holiness of each person..

Conservation of Social Integrity

Life gains meaning through social communities, and health is socially determined. Nurses fullfil
professional roles, provide for family members, assist with religious needs, and use interpersonal
relationships to conserve social integrity.

Conservation of Personal Integrity

Self worth and a sense of identity are important. The most vulnerable become patients. This begins
with the erosion of privacy and the creation of anxiety. Nurses can show patients respect by calling them
by name, repecting their wishes, valuing personal possesions, providing privacy during procedures,
supporting their defenses and teaching them. the nurses goal is always to impart knowledge and
strenght so that an individual can resume a private lifeno longer a patient, no longer dependent. The
conservation of personal integrity includes recognition of the holiness of each person..

Conservation of Social Integrity

Life gains meaning through social communities, and health is socially determined. Nurses fullfil
professional roles, provide for family members, assist with religious needs, and use interpersonal
relationships to conserve social integrity.
Metaparadigm in Nursing

Nursing

Nursing is the human interaction. Profesional nursing should be reserved for those few who can
complete a graduate person.

Person

Describe as holoistic being, wholeness os integrity.

Health

Is socially determined by the ability to function in reasonably normal manner.

Environment

Environment is conceptualized as the content in which individuals live their liveas.

STRENGTH

Levines model pocesses clarity. Levines conservation model provides nursing with a logically
congruent, of the person .

WEAKNESS
Although the four conservation principles appear simple initially, they contain subconcepts and
multiple variable. Nevertheless this model is still one of the simpler one developed.