Between conference sessions, nurses perused research posters on display.
Acclaimed nurse theorist Jean Watson, RN, AHN-BC, PhD, FAAN, distinguished professor of nursing and endowed chair in caring science at the University of Colorado (Denver) College of Nursing, and founder of the Watson Caring Science Institute, provided the keynote address June 22 at NYU Langone Medical Centers 16th annual Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice Conference.
In her keynote presentation, “Caring Science and Theory Meets Heart Science: Transforming Self and System from Within,” Watson discussed how healing takes place from the inside out, not the outside in. “Curing is an inner process, not an outer process,” she said. “Someone could be cured, but not healed.”
Watson cited research from the Institute of Heartmath, a nonprofit research and education organization that offers “tools, technology and training to teach people to rely on the intelligence of their hearts in concert with their minds at home, school, work and play.” She also explained the heart and brain are one organ, not two. The heart sends messages to the brain, she said, not the other way around.
“The Caritas Heart Methodology describes an 8-foot to 10-foot electromagnetic field all around us,” Watson said. “The heart radiates an electromagnetic field that energetically affects each others moods and feelings.”
Watsons presentation also included her Theory of Human Caring, in which she described her 10 carative factors/caritas processes. Process 4 calls for the development of authentic, trusting relationships between nurses and patients.
She used Sigridur Halldorsdottirs Model from 1991 to describe how these relationships vary from biocidic (toxic) to biogenic (life giving/life receiving). The classic nurse-patient relationship, she said, is described as bioactive, or life-sustaining. The biogenic mode, Watson said, is closet to transpersonal caring and Caritas (“cherish”) Consciousness in a caring/healing environment.
Watson spent the day before the keynote meeting and conversing with nurses on units at NYU Langone. She is the 2012 McClure Visiting Scholar named in honor of Margaret L. McClure, RN, EdD, FAAN, retired CNO at New York University Medical Center.
The program awards a fellowship each year to a visiting nurse scholar in support of consultation with nursing staff to stimulate clinical inquiry to enhance nursing practice. The visiting nurse scholar also serves as the keynote speaker for the annual research conference.
Tracey Boyd is a regional reporter.