Independence and Dependence in Nursing Practice : A Literature Review with Nursing Implications

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Master's Theses (1922-2009) Access restricted to Marquette Campus

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St. Onge, Judith L.
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The practice of nursing involves activities based upon clients' levels of dependence and independence. Nursing activities also potentially affect such levels. Little is documented which offers guidance to the nurse in intervening in dependence and independence, yet observation indicates that independence seems to be the desired entity. The purpose of this essay is to review literature on dependence and independence, including attitudes and behaviors of clients and nurses so as to increase the nurse's understanding of these concepts. A proposed model illustrating factors involved in the dependence-independence dynamic is developed. Suggestions for nursing intervention and research are included. The essay demonstrates that additional study about dependence and independence in the human is needed. Data collection aimed at a more thorough understanding of functional and dysfunctional dependence and independence and how these are affected by the attitudes and interventions of the nurse is necessary.