Nursing Theory presentation

Denise R Lewis
Nursing Theory Presentation
Profession Role of Transition
Professor Jagiello
History of Virginia
Born in Kansas City, Missouri
in 1897
Nursing diploma from the
Army School of Nursing in
Washington, DC in 1921.
Teaching experience at Norfolk
Protestant Hospital in Virginia
Bachelor’s degree in 1932 and
Master’s Degree in 1934 at
Teachers College at Columbia
Henderson Continued
Revised Harmer’s classic textbook of nursing for its 4th edition and
later wrote the 5th edition incorporating her personal definition of
Research associates at Yale university since 1953
Recipient of multiple Honorary Doctoral degrees.
Influential to the nursing profession in American and throughout
the world.
Died in 1996. (Nursing Theories 2012)
Virginia Henderson Theory
Virginia Henderson Theory is often call the Definition of Nursing.
Henderson believes that:
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 a
peaceful death) that he would perform unaided if he had the necessary
strength , will or knowledge. And to do this in such a way as to help him gain
independence as rapidly as possible” (Blais,K Hayes,J 2011)
Henderson also states that nurses play the temporary role of:
The conscious for the unconscious patients, the love of lives for the suicidal,
the leg of the amputee, the eyes of the blind, a means of locomotion for the
newborn, a voice for those who are too week to speak. (Nursing Theorist
The Development of Henderson Theory
Contributed in the modification of a nursing textbook
Also brought awareness to the fact that it was not mandated by
many states to issue nursing license.
Henderson disagreed with the official statement of the definition of
nursing practice listed in American Nurses Association (ANA) in
1932 and 1937 publication
 In 1955 Henderson research work allows for the modification of
the ANA definition.(Nursing Theorist 2010)
Theory Background
Henderson explains nursing as a theory. Her exact definition of nursing is
her “concept”
She stress that nurses should allow patients to be independent as soon as
possible to bring them back to their pre hospital state.
She also describes the nurses roles as:
Complementary (Nursing Theories 2012)
Henderson list 14 activities that nurses need to
assist their patients
1. Breathe normally
2. Eat and Drink
3. Eliminate body waste
4. Move and maintain desirable position in
5. Rest and sleep
6. Select suitable clothing
7. Maintain body temperature within normal range
by adjusting clothing and modifying environment
8. Keep the body clean and well groomed and
protect the integument
9. Avoid dangers in the environment and
avoid injuring others
10. Communicate with others in expressing
emotion, needs, fears or opinion
11. Worship according to one’s own faith
12. Work in such a way that there is a sense of
13. Play or participate in various forms of
14. Learn, discover or satisfy the curiosity that leads
to normal development and health and use the
available health facilities.
Conceptual Model of Nursing
Henderson created the theoretical model of nursing which
shadowed the humanistic approach, in which it highlights the caring
of the sick, the incapable and even the dying.
It also gives emphasis to more on what the nurse should do and
who should they take care of and thus relates to the reciprocal
interaction world view category. (Nursing Theorist 2010)
Henderson’s Values and Beliefs
Henderson explains that,
“Nurses will assist the patients to reach their daily goals by giving them the
necessary tool to accomplish knowledge, will and strength.”
She also strongly believed that nurses ought to know and assist her
patients with all their needs and promote independence. (Nursing
Theorist 2010)
Assumption of the Theory
Patient depend on nurses to assist with their care until they become
independent prior to hospital admission
Nurses will attend to the need of their patients anytime
It is the nurses responsibility to educate themselves at the
university level to be able to care in the event of complex cases
(Theoretical Foundations of Nursing 2011)
Some Limitation to Henderson Theory
There are no theoretical association between physiological and
other human characteristics.
No perception of holistic nature of human being
Limited role of nurses during the dying process (Nursing Theories
Theory that is Relevant to my Practice
Virginia Henderson is the theorist that I found to be most interested
and I apply her theory to my practice. I respect all my patients and
treat them as if I was treating my own family members/love-ones. I
assist them with all their needs and promote independence. I follow
her 14 basic needs that can be applied to patients of all ages. I am
always the patient advocate, especially for the ones that can’t make
their needs known at the time, for example ventilated/stroke patients.
Knowing that I make a difference in these people lives is the greatest
accomplishment for me.
Henderson created her own theory of nursing and how a nurse is to
conduct themselves while caring for a patient and made this
available as the definition of nursing
She stressed the importance of basic human needs as the
fundamental motivation of nursing and has led to further theory
development concerning the need of the person and allow nursing
to aid patients in meeting those needs
Her definition of nursing and the 14 components of basic nursing
care are straightforward and easy to follow (Nursing Theories 2012)
(2012). Virginia henderson's need theory. Nursing Theories, Retrieved
2011). The principles and practice of nursing. Theoretical Foundation of
Nursing, Retrieved from
(2010). Nursing Theorist: Virginia Henderson, Retrieved from
Blais, K. Hayes, J(2011). Professional nursing practice. (sixth ed., p. 100).
New Jersey: Pearson Education, Inc.

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