Nursing Care Model

Nurse practitioners are trained to practice medicine like physicians do, with the added approach of the nursing care model. The Nursing Care Model is built on unique tenets, including the following:

  • Going beyond cause- and cure of the health problem
    “Nursing is a process through which care is provided to individuals, families, or community groups primarily around circumstances and situations that arise from health-related problems. Medical practice, on the other hand, is primarily cause- and cure-oriented.” (Chater as quoted by Henderson, p. 25)

  • Nourishing and cherishing the patient.
    “I submit that nursing yesterday, today and tomorrow is caring for people and that unless it is built on an ideal of service to others it is built on shifting sand”. (Lamb as quoted by Henderson, p. 25)

  • Seeking to rehabilitate a person body, mind, and soul.
    “Simply stated, the goal of nursing as a field of professional endeavor is to help people attain, retain, and regain health. The phenomena with which nurses are concerned are man’s health-seeking and coping behaviors as he strives to attain health. Nurses are independent, professional practitioners whose field of work is health care.” (Schlotfeldt as quoted by Henderson, p.25)

  • Considers emotional, psychological, and social aspects that influence health.
    “The goal of nursing was to help the patient in his pursuit of ‘behavioral integrity’, which goal she said was ‘likely to…result in biological, psychological and social health’”. (Henderson, p. 25)

Nurse’s unique function

‘Nursing is primarily helping people (sick or well) in the performance of those activities contributing to health, or its recovery (or to a peaceful death) that they would perform unaided if they had the necessary strength, will, or knowledge. It is likewise the unique contribution of nursing to help people to be independent of such assistance as soon as possible…The nurse is temporarily the consciousness of the unconscious, the love of life of the suicidal, the leg of the amputee, the eyes of the newly blind, a means of locomotion for the newborn, knowledge and confidence for the young mother, a voice for those too weak to speak, and so on.’  (Henderson, p. 26)


Henderson, V. (1977). The concept of nursing. Blackwell Publishing. Downloaded from