Thursday, July 15, 2010

Dorothea Orem's Self-Care Deficit Theory




Dorothea Orem: Self-Care Deficit Theory

           UPOU Orem’s Supporters

The systematic accumulation of knowledge is essential to progress in any profession. However, theory and practice must be constantly interactive. Theory without practice is empty and practice without theory is blind (Cross,1981).

Among the client-centered theory available to the nursing profession and students, with the exception of Florence Nightingale’s theory, Dorothea Orem’s Theory of Self-Care Deficit is probably one of the best known, easily understood and most applied in the clinical setting. While most of us would recognize the Self-Care Deficit Theory as Orem’s sole contribution to the development of nursing, she is in fact the author of three, namely: the Self-Care Theory, the Theory of Self-Care Deficit and the Theory of Nursing Systems. All three theories are related to one another. They espouse the idea that individual clients have the function, capability and knowledge to maintain health and well-being by taking care of themselves. Whenever imbalances, disability and illness occur, the individual client would seek the aid of the nurse who possesses the knowledge, skills and ability to help him/her recover.

Alligood & Tomey (2006), stated that" Highly regarded for its usefulness in all aspects of nursing, Orem's Self Care Model continues to be the organizing frame work of many nurse researchers, educators, administrators and providers of client care". Its popularity and practicability can be seen by the different nursing bodies' interest in Orem's model and even the nurses interested in it, have formed an International Orem's Society for nursing science and scholarship (Alligood &Tomey,2006). This organization has worked a lot on Orem's work and utilizing Orem's theory in clinical practice, in nursing research and education.

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