Wholehearted Nursing: Exploring the BSN student experience of Holistic Nursing




Chudleigh, Jocelyn

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Background: This is a qualitative pilot study exploring the perspectives of University of Victoria BSN students around holistic nursing. The literature tells that nursing from a holistic lens has positive impacts for both nurses and patients yet continues to be an area of misunderstanding and discomfort among nurses and nursing students. Objectives: The purpose of this study is to contribute to the conversation around holistic nursing and nursing education. The results of this study may inform further studies and potential curriculum development. Methods: Participants were informed of the study through email and posting to a private facebook group open only to the University of Victoria BSN cohort of interest. Inclusion criteria included fourth year UVic BSN students eighteen years of age or older. This ensured that students had completed CPE 3 & 4 successfully. Data were gathered through thirty-minute focus group sessions. The sessions were audio recorded and then transcribed verbatim. The transcripts will then be analyzed and coded for themes. Results: Three major themes emerged from the data: Beyond the Diagnosis, Professionally Practicing, and Theory-Practice Gap. Within these themes we explored how nursing students define and understand holistic nursing practice and how they have experienced holistic nursing in their practice placements. Key findings include how students understand the importance of care that is attentive to the whole person and theoretical principles of application yet yearn for role models within their education that can demonstrate how to apply these principles within the realities of modern-day nursing. Discussions: The findings were comparable to those in a number of studies exploring holistic nursing and nursing education. Looking forward, this study should inform larger exploration of nursing students and their experiences around holistic nursing. Findings could be shared with curriculum committees to inform curriculum development.



Holistic, Holism, Nursing, BSN, Nursing Student, Nursing Education, bio-psycho-social