Orem’s self-care model: principles and general applications

  • P. R. Underwood


Psychiatric nursing has traditionally used theory developed by other disciplines and, as a result, has focused on the same clinical problems and developed the same or similar interventions. We have expressed clinical problems in terms of disruptions in mental or psychological processes or behaviour and have focused on things such as self-esteem problems, affect problems, hostility problems, social skills problems, trust problems dependency problems, anxiety problems, reality orientation problems, thought process problems (e.g., delusions), or perception problems (e.g., hallucinations). Our interventions, like those of other mental health disciplines, have been aimed at reducing, correcting, or changing certain psychological problems to improve behaviour or psychological functioning. Our practice has tended to be more like that of other mental health disciplines than of other nurses. As a result we have often had difficulty explaining the unique contributions of nursing in psychiatric/mental health care and thus to justify either the need for education and experienced nurses or equitable participation on the interdisciplinary team.


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  1. Orem, D. (1985) Nursing: Concepts of Practice, 3rd edn, McGraw-Hill, New York.Google Scholar

Further Reading

  1. Munley, M. and Sayers, P. (1984) Self-care Deficit Theory of Nursing, Personal and Family Health Associates, New Jersey.Google Scholar
  2. The Nursing Development Conference Group (1979) Concept Normalization in Nursing, 2nd edn, Little, Brown, and Co., Boston.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. R. Underwood

There are no affiliations available

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