Nursing defined

Registered nurses (RNs) are individuals who are educationally prepared and licensed by a state, commonwealth, territory, government or regulatory body to practice as a registered nurse. “Nurse” and “professional nurse” are synonyms for a registered nurse in this document.

Nursing Philosophy at Driscoll Children’s Hospital

Nursing is the assessment, diagnosis, treatment and evaluation of human responses and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, groups, communities and populations in recognition of the connection of all humanity. Patient and family-centered care is evidence-based and promotes collaborative decision-making between the healthcare team and patient/family.

Nursing is the protection, promotion and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, facilitation of healing, alleviation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, groups, communities and populations.

Integrating the Art and Science of Nursing

Nursing is a learned profession built on a core body of knowledge that reflects its dual components of art and science. Nursing integrates the art and science of caring and focuses on the protection, promotion and optimization of health and human functioning; prevention of illness and injury; facilitation of healing; and alleviation of suffering through compassionate presence. Nursing requires judgment and skill based on principles of the biological, physical, behavioral and social sciences. Registered nurses employ critical thinking to integrate objective data with knowledge gained from an assessment of the subjective experiences of healthcare consumers. Registered nurses use critical thinking to apply the best available evidence and research data to diagnosis and treatment decisions. Nurses continually evaluate the quality and effectiveness of nursing practice and seek to optimize outcomes.

Nursing promotes the delivery of holistic consumer-centered care and optimal health outcomes throughout the lifespan and across the health-illness continuum within an environmental context that encompasses culture, ethics, law, politics, economics, access to healthcare resources and competing priorities. Similarly, nursing promotes the health of communities by using advocacy for social and environmental justice, community engagement and access to high-quality and equitable healthcare to maximize population health outcomes and minimize health disparities. Nursing advocates for the well-being, comfort, dignity and humanity of all individuals, families, groups, communities and populations. Nursing focuses on healthcare consumer and interprofessional collaboration, sharing of knowledge, scientific discovery and social welfare.

Professional Nursing Standards of Practice

The Standards of Practice describe a competent level of nursing care as demonstrated by the critical thinking model known as the nursing process. The nursing process includes the components of assessment, diagnosis, outcomes identification, planning, implementation and evaluation. Accordingly, the nursing process encompasses significant actions taken by registered nurses and forms the foundation of the nurse’s decision-making.

Standard 1: Assessment

The registered nurse collects pertinent data and information relative to the healthcare consumer’s health or the situation.

Standard 2: Diagnosis

The registered nurse analyzes the assessment data to determine actual or potential diagnoses, problems and issues.

Standard 3: Outcomes Identification

The registered nurse identifies expected outcomes for a plan individualized to the healthcare consumer or the situation.

Standard 4: Planning

The registered nurse develops a plan that prescribes strategies to attain expected, measurable outcomes.

Standard 5: Implementation

The registered nurse implements the identified plan.

Standard 5A: Coordination of Care

The registered nurse coordinates care delivery.

Standard 5B: Health Teaching and Health Promotion

The registered nurse employs strategies to promote health and a safe environment.

Standard 6: Evaluation

The registered nurse evaluates progress toward the attainment of goals and outcomes.

Standard 7: Ethics

The registered nurse practices ethically.

Standard 8: Advocacy

The registered nurse demonstrates advocacy in all roles and settings.

Standard 9: Respectful and Equitable Practice

The registered nurse demonstrates advocacy in all roles and settings.

Standard 10: Communication

The registered nurse communicates effectively in all areas of practice.

Standard 11:  Collaboration

The registered nurse collaborates with healthcare consumers and other key stakeholders in the conduct of nursing practice.

Standard 12: Leadership

The registered nurse leads within the professional practice setting and the profession.

Standard 13: Education

The registered nurse seeks knowledge and competence that reflects current nursing practice and promotes futuristic thinking.

Standard 14: Evidence-based Practice and Research

The registered nurse integrates evidence and research findings into practice.

Standard 15: Scholarly Inquiry

The registered nurse integrates scholarship, evidence and research findings into practice.

Standard 16: Quality of Practice

The registered nurse contributes to quality nursing practice.

Standard 17: Professional Practice Evaluation

The registered nurse evaluates one’s own and others’ nursing practice.

Standard 18: Resource Stewardship

The registered nurse utilizes appropriate resources to plan, provide and sustain evidence-based nursing services that are safe, effective and financially responsible and used judiciously.

Standard 19: Environmental Health

The registered nurse practices in a manner that advances environmental safety and health.
Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice, Third Edition
American Nurses Association
8515 Georgia Ave, Suite 400
Silver Spring, MD 20910-3492

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