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1 Running head: THE COMFORT THEORY CONNECTION The Comfort Theory Connection Legend Michael Rommé August 2, 2020 South University: NSG5002
2 THE COMFORT THEORY CONNECTION The Comfort Theory Connection Throughout nursing, we have applied the theories of other medical practices to our nursing clinical experience until more recently in nursing history. We commonly hear about Florence Nightingale being the first nursing theories with her observations and strides made towards infection control, but we hadn’t truly had nursing theories recognized until; the works of Virginia Henderson’s needs theory and Hildegard Peplau’s interpersonal theory (Alejandro, 2017). These theorists and their theories were some of the first to challenge the perception of nursing and develop it in advancement as a profession. This analysis will look into the specific nursing theory called the comfort theory as defined and created by Katharine Kolcaba in 1994 (Kolcaba, 1994). We will analyze the comfort theory through the theorist’s background, theory description, evaluation of the theory and the application of the theory into the realm of nursing. Katharine Kolcaba: Comfort Theory Background Theorist’s Background Katherine Kolcaba was born in Cleveland, Ohio back in 1944. She attended St. Luke’s Hospital School of Nursing and graduated with her nursing diploma in 1965. In 1987, she moved forward, earning her Ph. D in Nursing and received a Certificate of Authority as a Clinical Nursing Specialist. Her education specialized in Gerontology, End of Life and Long-Term Care Interventions, Comfort Studies, Instrument Development, Nursing Theory, and Nursing Research (Petiprin, 2016). It was in her time with geriatric populations within long-term care and home health that she found the need for comfort to become part of the nursing care plan. We will look further into this as we break down her inductive reasoning for theory development. Kolcaba worked professionally as a registered nurse in the operating room, medical/surgical nursing, home health and in long-term care before advancing into less clinical
3 THE COMFORT THEORY CONNECTION roles of nursing theorist and educator. Kolcaba is the current Associate Professor Emeritus at University of Akron and also holds an adjunct position with Ursuline College. In her time in these roles, she has been recognized with the Distinguished Alumni Award (2007) from The Cleveland General and St. Luke's Nurses' Alumni Association. She has also been included within the renown Who’s Who in American Nursing since 1994 to present day (Petiprin, 2016). Phenomenon of Concern The work of Kolcaba is strongly based around the existing concept of comfort. When an individual thinks of nursing, a common overarching theme is comfort and healing. Kolcaba has worked in the direct settings of comfort and care throughout her career. Kolcaba is in a very specific situation where she was able to assess the differences in healing and care when a patient is in a medical/surgical hospital setting, as opposed to the home health and long-term care settings that naturally provide a greater sense of belonging and comfort for human beings. Her

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