This essay is an exploration of professional presence and its impact in the medical field. The ability of a health professional to understand and react to their patients can have both positive and negative impacts. According to McMahon and Christopher (2011), professional presence is the therapeutic application of self and involves the use of art and sciences of nursing. The benefit of the professional presence in healthcare is that it promotes patients’ experiences during the delivery of care. Present health professionals assist the patient to adopt the therapeutic environs through the application of healing concepts and the model of care.
Difference between Eastern and Western Health Models
Eastern medicine has been in place since times in memorial where yoga relieves asthmatic symptoms, acupuncture relieves headache, or migraines are relieved by herbal medicine. However, there lacks scientific evidence of the effectiveness of the interventions to health. On the contrary, western medicine is promoted by scientific evidence to explore the physical functioning of the body. However, several discomforts and side effects of western medicines are common even in the treatment of complicated conditions. Kelner and Wellman (2014) explain that Eastern medications can be used in line with western medications to alleviate the discomforts and side effects to promote the patient’s experience.
Another difference between the Western and Eastern health model is that the Eastern majors on the body software while the western majors on the body’s hardware. This simply means that the Eastern model explores energy regulation in the body and mind and its impact on the patient’s health, while, the western model applies scientific methods to explore the physical parameters of a patient. Unlike the western health models that explore the physical or the body parameter, the Eastern health model relies on the association between the body, the mind, and the spirit. The western model relies mostly on treatment without an evaluation of the core cause and results to side effects (Micozzi, 2018). However, the Eastern model rather than relying on pharmaceutical operations, tests and drugs apply spiritual activities and natural resources to alleviate symptoms and pain.
Difference between Western Health Model and My Professional Presence
I enrolled in the nursing profession due to my inner desire to help others by making a difference in their lives and health. I believe in the value of doing to others as I would wish them to do to me. I believe in the application of a holistic approach where the family, trauma, emotions, childhood, environment, stress and work affect health. Contrary to this approach is the use of the western health model which mostly relies on the pharmaceutical element of treatment that relies on the physical body without minding the spiritual aspects as well as brain health (Farquhar, 2018). If I am a patient, I would wish to receive a mind-body intervention that emphasizes holistic treatment as well as prevention. Several benefits are possible from alternative medicines like improved sleep, increased immunity, reduced use of medications, natural pain management, and reduced stress.
The best care to the patient through the use of a western medical approach is narrow and limited. This is because modern medicines believe in the use of strong and evidenced-based research to any approach. Farquhar (2018) explains that the application of science places all other alternatives as inferior because they lack a scientific backup. However, this I believe is not a guarantee that such procedures are not effective. Besides, modern medications are fully reactive and directed towards treatment without considering prevention. Worse, the method only explores treatment based on symptoms rather than treating the core cause of the problem. Besides, some treatment methods may make the situation worse for the patient like chemotherapy rather than alleviating the pain.
Mindfulness in Professional Presence
I am a mindful nurse as I can intentionally experience the present happenings with an open and curious attitude. I am always awake of the present by applying all the five senses which help to identify any changes in my mind arena without pushing or holding the present experiences. A mindful brain results in a clear and calm head. However, this is an art I have learned over time through mindfulness meditation.
A Harvard Health article (2019) provides that mindfulness in nursing is beneficial as it reduces distractions and increases awareness, in turn increasing assessment skills. Besides, I have developed my communication skills with colleagues and patients through self-awareness of their needs. A Harvard Health article (2019) explains that speaking and listening keenly increases the effectiveness of communication and improves clinical outcomes. Besides, mindfulness has helped me to easily cope with personal and professional stresses which in turn reduce professional burnout.
Jung Personality Test
After undertaking the Jung personality test, I learned that I have a defender personality, an aspect termed as Introverted Sensing Feeling Judging (ISFJ). According to the test, an individual with ISFJ personality are responsible, warm-hearted and reserved. Human Metrics (2019) explains that persons with this personality tend to be introverted, are quire, more focused and key observers. These elements are essential in remembering details of patients in particular and they are more tuned to the feelings and emotions of others. I agree with this analysis as I am empathetic, I remember details of my patients and people I meet.
Human Metrics (2019) explains that although ISFJs understand others easily, they face challenges in attempts to expressing myself. This may result in an individual keeping quiet while feeling lost or stressed. I agree with this trait as it was one problem I fought for years when I almost fell into depression without my knowledge. However, through mindful meditation and self-awareness, I learned how to speak out and share with others. There is also the element that persons with ISFJs are concrete and resist change, this I disagree with it as I am very adaptable.
The personality plays a vital role while relating to friends and families as the introvert aspects make me more oriented to facts rather than theories in everything. It angers when one presents me with theories rather than facts. I am more than loyal and many of my friends take advantage of that which led me to spend more time indoors watching movies. Professionally, I am accurate and methodical with high analytical abilities and exceptional memories. I am sympathetic and empathetic an element that not only facilitates my relationship with patients but increases my desire to further my education. However, the majority of other personality may misunderstand my ability to articulate or hide my challenging distress.
My Personal Goals
Physical: To meet my personal needs, the first aspect is maintaining a regular physical exercise regime. This will be attained through twice a week biking, and jogging three times a week. The second way to attain my physical needs is by eating healthy by avoiding junk foods. Previously, I have relied on buying food from fast foods but I am aiming at cooking daily by preparing organic foods. Besides, I will increase my portions of vegetables and fruits and reduce red meat.
Vital/Rhythmic: To meet my Vital/Rhythmic, I will spend 20 minutes daily meditating to clear my mind, reduce stress and promote adequate sleep. The second goal is to reduce the amount of time I spend on the internet through my phone to shut myself from unnecessary distractions.
Mental/Emotional: Following my personality, I have identified the need to speak out and share my emotions with my loved ones rather than holding them. Secondly, while in high school, I used to love reading but overtime. I no longer take time to read. My goal is to enroll and be visiting the local library at least twice a week. Reading fiction books used to interest and fascinated me and am planning to start reading fiction stories again.
Biographical/Spiritual: To attain my spiritual needs, I will pray more often, take time to read spiritual books to boost my spirituality. On the aspect of biology, I will employ breathing exercises to manage any anxiety and nervousness.
The Optimal Healing Environment (OHE) was formulated by Samueli Institute in 2004 and aims at providing an intrinsic healing capacity for the patient, health professionals, and families (Sakallaris et al., 2015). Sakallaris et al. (2015) explain that OHE includes patients, their families, their health creating behaviors and their external environments. The optimal healing environmental framework comprises of internal, external, interpersonal, and behavioral.
One of the health facilities that apply Optimal Healing Environment is Cape Coral Hospital (CCH) in Cape Coral, Fl which improves the health status of patients. According to Sakallaris et al. (2016) the first strategy of CCH in accordance with OHE model is behavioral environment where the facility aligns the whole-person healing of the patient to scientific practices. This strategy results to provision of quality and safety care which is in alignment to the regulatory requirements. The second element of OHE is internal environment where in CCH they promote optimal healing environment, family and staff respite and a letter of gratitude. This I measured through high staff retention, satisfied patients and increased engagement.
The Third element is the interpersonal environment where CCH incorporates the patient and the family in the Care Team Plan. Applying this plan according to Sakallaris et al. (2016) have helped CCH to maintain a continuous communication and coordination to provide ensure patient’s satisfaction during admission, hospitalization and discharge. The last element is the external environment promoted through healing spaces and ecological resilience. Sakallaris et al. (2016) explain that CCH attains their OHE through the external environment by Green team, women services healing gardens, staff healing gardens, and pathway to discovery. The OHE framework of Cape Coral Hospital (CCH) is presented in the figure below.
Figure 1: Optimal Healing Environment of Cape Coral Hospital (CCH) (Sakallaris et al., 2016)
The second health facility is CHI Health Good Samaritan affiliated by Planetree Inc. which humanizes health care processes. The OHE of Good Samaritans is founded on the principles of Planetree Inc. The first element of OHE in Good Samaritan is external environment where the facility provides the patients with a friendly environment gardens, family spaces, lounges, unit-based kitchens and the Christ King Chapel. In terms of behavioral environment, CHI Health Good Samaritan (2019) explains that the facility offers customized meals upon request by patients and their family. To promote healthy eating habits, the facility has dieticians who educate the patients on the advantage of some foods and their impact to the healing process.
The third element of OHE, the interpersonal environment in Good Samaritan is illustrated through shared decision making process between the patient, the family and care giver. Besides, CHI Health Good Samaritan (2019) explains that they provide educative brochures to the patients and ensures that patients can access their medical records electronically any day any time. Lastly, the internal environment in Good Samaritan promotes OHE by empowering the patients, their family and the employees by applying the religious model to the mending, wholeness and wellbeing. They attain this through their Pastoral Care department to include the aspect of spirituality to care delivery.
Application of Self-Awareness and Insights
After exploring the optimal healing environmental framework, I have learned several elements that I will apply to boost my professional presence. Being a nurse, I am faced with the role of caring for other human beings which call for mindfulness and self-awareness. One element is the use of compassion and kindness while caring for patients. This is attainable through the application of a holistic approach that will meet the patients’ needs of mind, body, and spirit as well as the needs of families.
As a nurse, I am attentive and compassionate towards my patients which is founded from my caring aspect in my family and friends. This is prompted by my personality, Introverted Sensing Feeling Judging (ISFJ), where I go above and beyond for others. One element to attain this is providing a physical environment that enhances the healing process. Attentively, I listen to patients and their families and provide them with meaningful information on how to promote the healing of their body, mind, and soul.
A Harvard Health article. (2019). Benefits of Mindfulness: Practices for Improving Emotional and Physical Well-Being. A Harvard Health Article. Retrieved from https://www.helpguide.org/harvard/benefits-of-mindfulness.htm
CHI Health Good Samaritan. (2019). Planetree. CHI Health Good Samaritan. Retrieved from https://www.chihealth.com/good-samaritan/about-us/planetree.html
Farquhar, J. (2018). Knowing practice: The clinical encounter of Chinese medicine. Routledge.
Human Metrics. (2019). ISFJ Introverted Sensing Feeling Judging. Human Metrics. Retrieved from http://www.humanmetrics.com/personality/isfj
Kelner, M., & Wellman, B. (2014). Complementary and alternative medicine: challenge and change. Routledge.
McMahon, M. A., & Christopher, K. A. (2011, April). Toward a mid‐range theory of nursing presence. In Nursing Forum (Vol. 46, No. 2, pp. 71-82). Malden, USA: Blackwell Publishing Inc.
Micozzi, M. S. (2018). Fundamentals of Complementary, Alternative, and Integrative Medicine-E-Book. Elsevier Health Sciences.
Sakallaris, B., Macallister, L., Smith, K., & Mulvihill, D. (2015). The Business Case for Optimal Healing Environments. Global Advances In Health And Medicine, 5(1), 94-102. doi: 10.7453/gahmj.2015.097
Sakallaris, B., Macallister, L., Smith, K., & Mulvihill, D. (2016). The Business Case for Optimal Healing Environments. Global Advances In Health And Medicine, 5(1), 94-102. doi: 10.7453/gahmj.2015.097
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