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My Nursing Philosophy

Whitney Farrand

Alfred State College

17 March 2018

What is nursing philosophy? Cathy Thompson (2017) states that a nursing philosophy

digs down into the core of why a nurse is a nurse. While there are many famous nursing

philosophies, a personal philosophy is an intimate investigation into why an individual became a

nurse. It answers the questions of why nursing, what a person believes and how a nurse will care

for his or her patients. It is important for every nurse to understand his or her motives behind

care to better drive quality patient care. This paper will seek to better explain and express the

authors personal beliefs and reasonings for nursing. Through the careful break down of beliefs

about what nursing is and a thorough examination of the definition of evidenced based patient

care, the personal nursing philosophy of the author will be developed.

The nursing career is a noble profession. The nursing career is not one that should be

entered into because of the salary, instead this career is one of self-sacrifice and commitment to

others (Jessica, 2016). Nursing is a chance for those with an other-focused drive, to offer care to

those who need it most. Nursing often lacks the glamour of jobs like high powered CEO’s,

doctors and other highly esteemed careers. Nurses are vital to the health and survival of a

community but, are rarely thanked for this role. Care should always be patient focused with an

emphasis on ethical principles like informed consent and justice. Exemplary nurses are those

whose patient care is a combination of evidenced based practice and ethics expressed through

compassion, dignity, honesty, trustworthiness, reliability and empathy (Jessica, 2016).

No matter what profession one is in, the question of how the career was chosen will

always be asked. This is the story of how this author chose to pursue a career in nursing. Starting

out college in pharmacy school was a happy adventure. Classes were going well, and things

looked positive for the future of this young adult. However, service and hospitality have long

been important characteristics to this individual. Through some research and talking with an

advisor, it was realized that pharmacist do little to no direct patient care. The best fit for the

student was a career in nursing. As a nurse, she would be able to work with the public directly,

have an impact on the lives of others and serve those who needed help.

The empowerment of nurses is very important. Nurses have direct effects on patient

outcomes. As such, it is the duty of nurses to be advocates for their patients (Kourkouta &

Papathanasiou, 2014). Nurses need to understand that principle and be placed in situations where

their assessment and knowledge holds power with physicians. This relationship between nurse

and physician is vital to the health and well-being of the patient. The nurse’s unique proximality

to the patient allows opportunities for teaching and conversation that may other wise never take

place. Therapeutic conversation coupled with active listening and teaching can change the lives

of patients. It is the duty of the nurse to educate on prevention and wellness. Therapuetic

communication is a proven way to improve patient outcomes, decrease depression, increase

patient satisfaction and improve nurse to patient communication (Kourkouta & Papathanasiou


It is important to note who the nurse has a duty to. Clearly the nurse is accountable to the

patient and their families. As before mentioned, the nurse needs to be empowered. Due to this, it

is imperative that nurses build and support each other. Nurse supervisors and managers need to

create strong teams who support one another. Finally, the nurse has a commitment to the

interdisciplinary team. Nurses should communicate with physicians, social workers, case

management, physical therapy, occupational therapy and any other discipline that may impact

that specific patients care.

Through the examination of the above beliefs a state can be made about the personal

philosophy of this author. This author’s personal philosophy is, ‘All patients regardless of race,

social class or beliefs deserve quality evidenced based care and ethical care through the

compassionate and empathic communication. Care includes not only the ill but also preventative

treatments and education. This goal is only attainable through the combined efforts of the

nursing team and all other health care disciplines.”

In the authors current nursing practice, this philosophy is being practiced. The goals of

empathetic patient care are met through the careful consideration of patient wises and values.

Shared governance councils offer the nurse a unique ability to work on the rest of the statement.

Informatics council works to be a bridge between nurses and the informatics world. The

representative on the council empowers floor staff to present new ideas for charting and

improvement measures. Unit council works to find evidenced based research to improve the

floor. This council also works to seek out and identify those nurses who are going above and

beyond in the realm of patient care. The final council seat held by this nurse is education council.

This council works to encourage life long learning. By offering the staff a multitude of

educational opportunities, the council works to keep the hospital up to date and evidenced based.


Jessica, G. (2016). How a personal philosophy nursing can help your career. Medical Staffing.

15(2), 1-2. Retrieved from:


Kourkouta, L., & Papathanasiou, I. V. (2014). Communication in Nursing Practice. Materia

Socio Medica, 26(1), 65–67.

Thompson, C. (2017). How to figure out your personal philosophy of nursing. Nursing

Education. 48(6), 343-349. Retrieved from: