Understanding Middle-Range Theories

Image result for middle range theory            Sociologist Robert Merton advocated for middle-range theory and these theories are often derived from grand theories (Liehr and Smith, 2017, p. 51). Merton explains it as a theory that lies between the minor, but necessary working hypotheses that evolve in abundance in daily research and it’s a systematic effort to develop a unified theory (Liehr and Smith, 2017, p. 51).  There are two diagrams below to be used as visual aids to help everyone better understand middle-range theories.

Middle-range theories are rooted in sociology and usually are focused on social behavior and social change. However, as a result of the influence of sociology, many critics are not in favor of the use of these theories in a different disciplinary setting. Consequently, “Thorne suggests that nurses do not simply borrow theories from other disciplines, but twist and bend them to serve the disciplinary purpose” (Liehr and Smith, 2017, p. 54). The development of this theory has led to middle range theories that are more reflective of a nursing theme than a sociology theme, such as caring and comfort theories (Liehr and Smith, 2017, p. 59). Liehr and Smith (2017), emphasizes the importance of choosing a name that describes the main ideas of the theory (p. 55).

Image result for middle range theory


Liehr, P., & Smith, M.J. (2017). Middle range theory a perspective on development and use. Advances in Nursing Science Vol. 40, No. 1, pp. 51–63.

Images retrieved from the websites below:












Review of the Three Philosophical Worldviews

Image result for world view

Our discussion today will be on the three philosophical worldviews: the Reaction, the Reciprocal Reaction, and the Simultaneous Action Worldviews. The Reaction Worldview is primarily focused on the disease process and healing the physical ailment. The Reciprocal Reaction Worldview is centered on healing the whole person which consists of the physiological, psychological, spiritual, and social well-being of people. Simultaneous Action Worldview emphasizes both that internal and external extrinsic factors impact the patient’s state of wellness.


Image result for world view           My personal view is that wellness is more than just good physical health. It’s achieving overall optimum health which includes some necessary components such as a state of balance physically, mentally, and spiritually. My personal nursing view is geared toward a holistic approach to care and therefore, aligns with the Reciprocal Reaction Worldview. Consequently, it does not align with my employer’s worldview.
My employer subscribes more to the Simultaneous Action Worldview. The vision of Chandler Hall is “a vibrant open intergenerational community for people at all stages of life.” Also, the mission statement is “Together, transforming the experience of aging in the Quaker tradition.” Chandler Hall has promoted an intergenerational environment and they deeply believe this extrinsic factor benefits both the elders and staff. Although, I agree with the impact of intergenerational activities and care. However, this external factor is not beneficial to all residents and staff members. I believe incorporating a holism component would enhance the care at Chandler Hall.


Butts, J. B., & Rich, K. (2011). Philosophies and theories for advanced nursing practice. Sudbury, Mass.: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

Chandler Hall. (2018). Mission and vision. The Kendal Corporation, Retrieved from http://ch.kendal.org/about/mission-vision-and-values/

Fe-Male and Male Nurses – How do we measure up?


Feminist Caring Ethics

We are Caring! We are Nurses!

Not to be gender bias, but most male nurses I have encountered have been excellent caregivers. Now, this may be my perception because there are so few men nurses in comparison to female nurses. However, today we will discuss Feminist Ethics. So, why discuss Feminist Ethics when my opinion appears to be shewed toward discrediting this theory? Well, I am glad you asked; let me explain. My interest stemmed from a recent how observation and conversation about the “unofficial” males and female roles in our society. The consensus was the mother is usually expected to take off work to tend to the needs of the children, such as school closings, illnesses, and routine appointments. I recognize this is not the exact topic of discussion, but this is what sparked my interest in the chapter of our reading assignment.

According to Tong, some feminine theorist like Ned Nodding believes genders gravitate more to contemplate behaviors in regards to caring for others (Rich and Butts, 2018. p. 166). Also, Sara Ruddick builds on this belief by emphasizing both males and females have natural instincts. Ruddick’s theory produces solid union between nursing care and motherliness (Sander- Staudt, n.d.). According to Sander- Staudt (n.d.), Ruddick believes “both men and women can be mothers or mothering.” Also, she infers mothering is peaceful and opposes war or violence; some people object stating mothering can be demandingly violent, protective and respond fiercely (Sander- Staudt, n.d.).

Nevertheless, Feminist Ethics of Caring is a controversial subject, whether addresses personal or professional ethical needs. Also, opinions will vary from person to person and situation to situation. My personal and professional view aligns with a modified version of Ruddick’s theory. Mothering is protective, just as nursing is advocating or protecting. Therefore, we can not talk about caring and disregard protective instincts or an aggressive masculine response. Maternal thinking is not gender-specific; some male nurse can run circles around some women nurses. However, men roles in our society do not represent their extremely caring and compassionate capabilities.


Butts, J. B., & Rich, K. (2011). Philosophies and theories for advanced nursing practice. Sudbury, Mass.: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

Sander-Saudt, M. (n.d.). Care ethics. Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy- A Peer Rewed Academic Resource, Arizona University. Retrieved from https://www.iep.utm.edu/care-eth/


The Struggle Within



“We’re built of contradictions, all of us. It’s those opposing forces that give us strength, like an arch, each block pressing the next. Give me a man whose parts are all aligned in agreement and I’ll show you madness. We walk a narrow path, insanity to each side. A man without contradictions to balance him will soon veer off.” ― Mark Lawrence, King of Thorn

There is a biblical text that states, “when I want to do right I do wrong” (Zondervan, n.d.). Ok, so where am I going with this discussion? No one perfect….. Yes, surprise not one person falls into the perfect category. So, now, that the playing field is leveled; let’s play, shall we.
Butts and Rich (2018) introduced us to Behavior Health Theories (BHT) and emphasized how advanced practice nurses utilize these theories to evoke change in their patients (p. 244). There are many BHT, but these few are the most popular: Behavioral Health Model, Social Cognitive Theory and Theory of Reasoned Action and Theory of Planned Behavior (Butts and Rich, 2018, p. 242). Although, we will not go into depth discussing the difference in the theories; it’s important to know nurses can use a single theory or a combination of theories to achieve desired results (SImpson, 2015, p. 5). Graduate and doctoral level nurses use BHT to promote healthy choices when caring for their patients and at different stages, different strategies may be needed. We are leaders in clinical education and applying best practice. Nurses are educators by nature. It’s part of the job! How can you care for someone and not explain to them how to care for themselves? If this happens, we are doing a great disservice to our patient.
According to Dr. Simpson (2015), BHT and models can help clinicians design a successful plan that identifies lifestyle challenges for a community (p. 1). There are a variety of internal struggles, but none is uncommon to man. Smoking, obesity, opioid addiction, bulimia, anorexia, alcoholism, reckless sexual behaviors, self-destructive behaviors, and abusive behaviors toward others are all difficulties encountered by humans. We’re humans because we are flawed. However, flawed is never the goal; advancement to a better you is the aim.
The struggle begins with behavioral modifications and ends consistency.
Changing a person’s behavior starts with identifying social, economic, and cultural barriers to develop a realistic plan. This step makes adherence more feasible. Moreover, when the change takes place often people have a difficult time with maintaining that change (Rich and Butts, 2018, p.258). Could this possibly be the cause of stats successful individuals resorting to old behaviors? For example, losing significant weight only to regain it years later, or quit smoking and restarting again due to stressful circumstances. According to Rich and Butts (2018), biobehavioral factors play a significant role in maintaining some changes (p.258). Often, judgment calls by bystanders on the outside looking in point to lack of discipline which could be a contributing factor. Nevertheless, physiological symptoms play a large play in the maintenance stage of behavior modification. Also, Rich and Butts (2018), emphasize developing self-management and coping skills are necessary for positive change (p. 258).

By Charlene aka The Art of Nursing

Butts, J. B., & Rich, K. (2011). Philosophies and theories for advanced nursing practice. Sudbury, Mass.: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

Lawrence, M. (N.D.). King of thorns. Retrieved from https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/internal-conflict

Simpson, V. (2015, March). Models and theories to support health behavior intervention and program planning. Purdue University, Retrieved from https://extension.purdue.edu/extmedia/HHS/HHS-792-W.pdf

Zondervan. (n.d.). Bible gateway. Retrieved from https://www.biblegateway.com/

Compassion Fatigue is Real

Compasion FatigueOften, nurses prioritize the needs of others above their own; this is greatly due to our compassionate and caring nature.  Let’s face it, it takes a special person to care for the needs of others.  This is what makes nursing an art.  However, the art of nursing includes self-care, too.  So, what happens when the nurse is depleted?  Is care compromised when nursing is no longer an art to us but a list of task to complete?

Compassion fatigue is probably more common in nursing then is acknowledged in health care.  According to Todaro-Franceschi (2015), many nurses do not realize they are experiencing compassion fatigue (p. 53). Compassion fatigue or burnout slowly develops over time which results in emotional exhaustion (Todaro-Franceschi, 2015, p.53 ). However, many nurses push through this moral distress to care for their patient. Nevertheless, the quality of care decreases because they become task oriented and their zeal for caring diminishes. Todaro-Franceschi (2015) describes the process as a natural defense mechanism to prevent overexertion of the individual (p. 53).

Lachman (2016) mentions some strategies to combat or recover from moral distress or compassion fatigue such as maintaining a balance in life and caring for yourself (p. 276). ANA (2015) Interpretative Statement Provision 5, emphasizes nurses must care for themselves in order to care for others (Lachman, 2016, p. 276). Other, strategies are to educate the staff on how to recognize signs of compassion fatigue, leaders must be supportive of the distressed staff, encourage employee assistance programs and focus on the positive are a few suggestions (Lachman, 2016, p. 277-278).

The ART of maintaining the “care” in healthcare
Todaro-Franceschi, V. (2015, June). The ART of maintaining the “care” in healthcare. Nursing Management, 46(6), 53–55. doi: 10.1097/01.NUMA.0000465407.76450.ab

Lachman, V. D. (2016, July-August). Compassion fatigue as a threat to
ethical practice: Identification, personal and workplace prevention/management strategies. Medsurg Nursing, 25(4), 275-278. Retrieved from http://www.nursingworld.org/MainMenuCategories/EthicsStandards/Resources/Courage-and-Distress/Compassion-Fatigue-as-a-Threat-to-Ethical-Practice.pdf