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Caring Theory as an Ethical Guide to Administrative and Clinical Practices

Watson, Jean PhD, RN, AHN-BC, FAAN

JONA's Healthcare Law, Ethics, and Regulation: July-September 2006 - Volume 8 - Issue 3 - p 87-93
ARTICLES

ABSTRACT This article explores the conventional relationship between caring, economics, and administrative practices that no longer serve patients, practitioners, or systems. A shift toward human caring values and an ethic of authentic healing relationships is required as systems now have to value human resources and life purposes, inner meanings, and processes for workers and patients alike, not just economics alone. This shift requires a professional ethos with renewed attention to practice that is ethics/values-based and theory-guided, alongside evidence and economics. Emergent professional, caring-theory-guided practice options are presented, which are grounded on this deeper ethical moral and theoretical foundation for transforming the practitioners and the system.

From the School of Nursing, University of Colorado Denver and Health Sciences Center, Denver.

This manuscript is based on a presentation at an International Health Administration Conference, Nuremberg, Germany, November 2005.

Corresponding author: Jean Watson, PhD, RN, AHN-BC, FAAN, School of Nursing, University of Colorado Denver and Health Sciences Center, Denver, CO 80262 (e-mail: Jean.Watson@uchsc.edu).

© 2006 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.