The First Nurse-Patient Encounter in a Psychiatric Setting: discovering a moral commitment in nursing

Nursing Ethics 8 (4):313-327 (2001)


The aim of this study was to deepen nurses’ understanding of the importance of carefully managing the first nurse-patient encounter in a psychiatric setting according to each patient’s suffering and future hopes. The study was carried out using an action research approach. The action planned was the implementation of a conceptual model reflecting Eriksson’s caring theory. Data were collected by interviews with nurses and observational notes kept in a research diary. The data analysis followed the procedure of qualitative content analysis. A generalization of the entire learning process shows the first nurse-patient encounter to be a moral commitment in nursing. A theoretical framework of nursing assessment conveying knowledge about the patient as unique and being a whole person can support the nurse in encouraging the patient to enter into a relationship. This insight stimulated the nurses in this study to reflect on the moral responsibility of continuing the relationship and initiating an ongoing nursing process. Awareness of this responsibility made them reflect more on the possibility of nurses taking autonomous actions in order not to abandon the patient and to avoid feeling guilty.

Download options


    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 72,805

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library


Added to PP

12 (#816,550)

6 months
1 (#386,031)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

References found in this work

Add more references

Similar books and articles

Independent Nursing Practice with Clients.M. Lucille Kinlein - 1977 - Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.