Nursing Elements in Barbara Carper´s Fundamental Patterns of Knowing in Nursing

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The essence of nursing knowledge as well as the elements that create a more sophisticated nursing practice are described by Barbara Carper in Fundamental Patterns of Knowing in Nursing. Carper derived four areas of knowing, empirics, esthetics, personal knowledge, and ethics; these areas complete the expertise that the nurse must draw on to appropriately care for any individual. Carper implicates that knowledge is not simply a regurgitation of fact, and introduces a broadened view of knowledge as being made up of different entities as well as ascertained in various ways.
The first pattern of knowledge Carper portrays is empirics; this is the most traditional sense of knowledge, yet one of the newest to be integrated into the nursing practice. Carper states that this area focuses on facts, and verifiable details in relation to the patient. This author believes that within nursing this area of knowledge is the foundation for which the rest of practice is built upon. This is the nurses understanding of use of tools, tests and medication. This knowledge allows the nurse to attend directly to the patient’s most immediate health needs, as well as develop an idea of the patients overall health status. This author believes that as the nursing profession has developed so has the need for empirics, with nurses spending the most amount of time with the person out of the health care professionals it is the nurses role to observe the patients symptoms or lifestyle and be aware of possible concerns.
The esthetics portion of knowledge was discussed next by Carper, her portrayal of esthetics in nursing integrates the care of the whole person. Carper explains an integral part of esthetics as utilizing empathy and perception. Empathy allows t...

... middle of paper ... This author recognizes Carpers view of applying how to make an ethical decision as the most important factor in achieving an ethical decision.
This author found that the fundamentals of nursing knowledge addressed nursing in its most flawless form. It explains what a seasoned successful nurse utilizes in their daily practice. What this author found noteworthy was how interlinked the aspects are to one another, for example how empirics can be useless if a nurse has no personal knowledge to communicate with the patient, so the patient may not choose to disclose a symptom that may be a important to their health. The integration of all forms of knowing assure the patient is receive culturally competent, knowledge based, holistic care.

Works Cited

Barbara A. Carper (1978), "Fundamental Patterns of Knowing in Nursing", Advances in Nursing Science 1(1), 13–24
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