Date of Graduation
This research study investigated the meanings student nurses were forming in caring for suffering patients. Participants for this study were senior nursing students in a diploma school of nursing for registered nurses in Western Pennsylvania. The study used a phenomenological research design. Fifteen student nurses were interviewed and audiotaped to determine their experiences in providing compassionate healing to suffering patients during their educational experience at the school. The students were also asked to complete a demographic questionnaire and provide a picture of compassionate healing which had meaning for them. The study was conducted in the school of nursing building in the investigators office. Confidentiality was maintained by coding all data to protect the anonymity of all participants. A transcriptionist transcribed all data verbatim from the audiotapes. Data analysis was carried out using the Swanson-Kauffman method of data analysis for phenomenological research. Reliability was achieved by having a fellow doctoral student verify the emerging themes from the data. Validity was accomplished by student nurse participants confirming that the emerging themes were representative of their experiences with suffering patients. Three themes were identified through the data analysis. These themes were (1) Origins of student nurses as compassionate healers, (2) Performing the role of compassionate healer, and (3) Revelations from the healing experience. The model of compassionate healing was conceptualized as analogous to the sprouting and flowering of a violet. In this analogy, the nurse must stay close to her origins as a compassionate healer to remain sensitive and caring, just as the violet in its growth remains close to the soil. Nurse educators need to encourage students to share their experiences with suffering patients and provide clinical support for healing behaviors they display. In this way, students will be nurtured to continue their role as compassionate healers.
Lohri-Posey, Brenda Sue, "Student nurses' lived experiences as compassionate healers to suffering patients." (1996). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 9317.