Theorist Critique Essay


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The part of Hildegard Peplau to theories on nursing. particularly on psychiatric nursing pattern. is widely recognized ( Barker. 1998 ) . In a period of 40 old ages. Peplau was able to supply valuable penetrations as to the wide scope of functions that a nurse can play. both in general and peculiar facets. of psychotherapeutic nursing ( Barker. 1998 ) .

Psychological theories and psychosocial interpersonal theories of her clip. such as those of Erich Fromm. Harry S. Sullivan. and Karen Horney led Peplau to explicate and construct her ain theory. which was destined to go popular among the nursing community ( Nystrom. 2007 ) .

Peplau was besides influenced by the parts of Lewin and the Gestalt theoreticians with regard to the significance of the construct of interaction ( Peplau. 1954 ) . She cites. in her work entitled Utilizing Themes in Nursing Situations. Lewin’s construct of a “whole model within which an person operates and interacts with other forces at work in a state of affairs ( Peplau. 1954 ) . ” She is similarly influenced by the construct of interacting forces. as referred to by Einstein as the “pushes and pulls” that influence a state of affairs ( Peplau. 1954 ) .

Peplau has been tagged by her co-workers. who called her the “mother of psychiatric nursing ( Barker. 1998 ) . ” Through her many plants. the definition of nursing attention has evolved as “an interpersonal. fact-finding. nurturing and growth-provoking procedure ( Nystrom. 2007 ) . ” For Peplau. it is indispensable that a nurse be cognizant of the curative environment. which refers to the field where the interacting forces exist ( Peplau. 1954 ) . The interactions that occur in the environment form the state of affairs ( Peplau. 1954 ) . On the other manus. the nurse should larn how to react to the alone features of the given state of affairs and interact with her patient ( Peplau. 1954 ) .

In 1980. the American Nurses’ Association based their definition of the work of nurses on the theory of Peplau ( Guest column – Interpersonal Theory in nursing pattern: the Peplau bequest. 1998 ) . The said definition refers to nurses’ work as “the diagnosing and intervention of human responses to existent and possible wellness jobs ( Guest column – Interpersonal Theory in nursing pattern: the Peplau bequest. 1998 ) . ” It is pointed out that the definition places accent on the psychosocial and behavioural jobs of patients. instead than diagnostic facets of their unwellness ( Guest column – Interpersonal Theory in nursing pattern: the Peplau bequest. 1998 ) .

Theory Description.

Peplau concerned herself with finding “the function of the nurse in depicting and responding” to mental unwellness and wellness ( Barker. 1998 ) . Her interpersonal relation theory proposes that every patient be treated as persons. since people are different from one another ( Barker. 1998 ) . Therefore. the curative relationship should be characterized by uniqueness and individualism ( Barker. 1998 ) . Thus. for Peplau. theoretical accounts and theories play small function in the planning and execution of nursing attention ( Barker. 1998 ) .

Peplau’s theory emphasized the function of two histrions in the publicity of the wellness of a patient. viz. the patient himself. and the nurse taking attention of him ( Nystrom. 2007 ; Guest column – Interpersonal Theory in nursing pattern: the Peplau bequest. 1998 ) . Their responses to each other constitute the “pushes and pulls” that determine the result of the state of affairs ( Peplau. 1954 ) .

Her theory is based on her place that interpersonal dealingss offer great relevancy to wellness attention state of affairss. and that the interaction that occurs between the nurse or wellness attention supplier and the patient can consequence a qualitative impact on the wellness results of the patient ( Nystrom. 2007 ) .

For illustration. she noted that mundane interactions of nurses with their patients lead the latter to organize human responses. such as anxiousness. self-system and hallucinations ( Guest column – Interpersonal Theory in nursing pattern: the Peplau bequest. 1998 ) . These human responses call for appropriate action from the nurses ( Guest column – Interpersonal Theory in nursing pattern: the Peplau bequest. 1998 ) .

The treatment above shows that Peplau believed that worlds. the environment. and nursing all contribute to the publicity of wellness of the patient. Again. this is a manifestation of the influence of Einstein’s theory of “pushes and pulls” and Gestalt theoreticians on her work ( Peplau. 1954 ) .

Peplau proposed “the deliberate usage of the interpersonal relationship into the professional pattern of nursing” in 1952. through her work entitled Interpersonal Relations in Nursing ( Beeber & A ; Bourbonniere. 1998 ) . A more systematic usage such relationship in nursing pattern can be achieved and promoted with the apprehension of interpersonal form. Peplau defined interpersonal form as the “category of a group of separate ( interpersonal ) acts holding typical. similar characteristics including ideas. feelings and actions ( Beeber & A ; Bourbonniere. 1998 ) . ”

Forms are characterized by their forms. subjects. names. and processes ( Beeber & A ; Bourbonniere. 1998 ) . These features allow nurses to place the forms. Designation of forms is utile. because it would warrant the intercession of nurses where the identified forms serve as barriers to the wellness of the patients ( Beeber & A ; Bourbonniere. 1998 ) .


Peplau’s theories rest on several premises. First. she believes that nursing is a profession. non simply an business that trades with everyday undertakings. Second. for Peplau. the wellness and recovery of patients remainders. non merely on physiological development through medicine and other medical processs. but on psychological and emotional support. Finally. she believes that nurses. being the 1s who are invariably interacting with patients. are the 1s who should analyze how good interpersonal relationships with patients could take to the latter’s recovery and wellness.

Peplau had been consistent in her presentation of her theory. ne’er rolling from her basic thesis that interpersonal dealingss between the patient and the nurse are relevant factors towards the route to recovery of the former.


One application of Peplau’s theory of Interpersonal Relationship in Nursing is in the field of group psychotherapeutics. Lego describes how the nurse can presume several different functions while in group psychotherapeutics. which shows how effectual Peplau’s theory can be in application ( 1998 ) .

In clinical surveies he himself conducted. Lego showed that the nurse can play several functions. such as that of a alien. resource individual. instructor. leader. alternate and counsellor. while within group psychotherapeutics ( Lego. 1998 ) . He besides described how the nurse helps the patient go through different stairss in the acquisition procedure. viz. . ” observation. description. analysis. preparation. proof. proving. integrating. and use. ” His clinical surveies. therefore. are manifestations of the efficaciousness of Peplau’s theory of nursing as applied in pattern ( Lego. 1998 ) .


Barker. P. ( 1998 ) . The hereafter of the Theory of Interpersonal Relations? A personal contemplation on Peplau’s bequest.Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing 5. 213-220.

Beeber. L S. & A ; Bourbonniere. M. ( 1998 ) . The construct of interpersonal form in Peplau’s Theory of Nursing.Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing 5. 187-192.

Chambers. M. ( 1998 ) . Interpersonal mental wellness nursing: research issues and challenges.Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing 5. 203-211.

Guest column – Interpersonal Theory in nursing pattern: the Peplau bequest. ( 1998 ) .Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing 5. 165–166

LEGO S. ( 1998 ) . The application of Peplau’s theory to group psychotherapeutics. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing 5. 193–196.

Nystrom. M. ( 2007 ) . A patient-oriented position in experiential issues: a theoretical statement for using Peplau’s interpersonal relation theoretical account in healthcare scientific discipline and pattern. Nordic College of Caring Science.

Peplau. H E. ( 1954 ) . Using Subjects in Nursing Situations.The American Journal of Nursing 54( 3 ) . 325-328.


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