Interpersonal Relationship

No. 15 To promote the development of productive interpersonal relationship
By: Grace Orunmuyiwa

To Abdellah, Nursing is a service to individual, families and society. The goal of nursing is the fullest physical, emotional, intellectual, social and spiritual functioning of the client which pertains to holistic care. Abdellah averred that Nursing is based on an art and science that moulds the attitude, intellectual competence and technical skills of the individual nurse into the desire and ability to help people, sick or well, cope with their health needs.

This means that nursing is a body of knowledge which can mould the individual’s attitude to becoming an intellectual competent nurse who has the ability to help people, sick or well.

That means for the nurse to be able to use Abdellah’s frame work for the assessment and plan of her duty, she must be competent and knowledgeable.

Anyway let us consider the use of Abdellah’s typology of 21 nursing problems – specifically, looking at number 15 as it affects our care of our clients and their recovery.

This states: to promote the development of productive interpersonal relationship.

This is very necessary especially those of us who work with very ill and chronic patient - ranging from CKD, Acute renal failure, and even some induced kidney disease. Most of these patients need their families and significant others to be with them to encourage them before such procedures that will last not less than four hours so as a nurse who works in the renal dialysis unit. Abdellah’s model of nursing can equip me with specific guide line as to how I can help better understand and manage these patients with good care and grace – by at least allowing their family members and significant others to come in and see them even if it is for few minutes.
I would like to cite another case of one of my patients who never relaxes during her sessions of dialysis. But as soon as she hears her husband’s voice, she will start smiling and relax and can even sleep. Thus some patients many  a times will relax and finish their section of dialysis only when a nurse or doctor touches and pats on their back. This explains the development of productive inter personal relationships and it,s good effect on our very ill patients.

Thirdly, in the natural parlance, if you are in a state of dilemma and you see your relation, you just feel that God has sent you a relief. Also when you are in trouble, you naturally will request for a close family member or other significant others – this interpersonal relationship, exchange of ideas and a sigh /huge of relief.

Even in our day to day work as ordinary hospital workers, I have seen patients who are being wheeled to the theatre and they request for their wife/husband to be allowed to see them, otherwise they will not go. As soon as you allow their loved one to see them, they will huge a sigh of relieve and can make such comment like “ I can go now to the theatre and come back”. Some of them will hug them tightly, some will shed tears of joy and of relief while some will express feeling of goodness and of joy – like I feel good and on top of the world.

Abdellaah averred that the promotion of the development of productive interpersonal relationships – allows the patient’s significant others to stay with the patient before and after the procedure. This we can see from the examples and instances given above that it allows for bonding, expression of love, joy, care and promotes interpersonal relationship.

After allowing their family members and significant others to see them, that nurse who carried out that procedure of allowing patient to bond and love is also rewarded with a smile and a good kind word from both the patient and his relations.
CONCLUSION: The use of Abdellah’s concept of health, in nursing has been proved to be of good result especially in the area of caring for the very ill and chronic patients who need one invasive, procedure or another life saving/life maintenance procedure to exist. This is because many a times they need the support of their family members  and that of the significant others.

1.            Abdellah F. G. & Levine E. (1965) Better Patient Care Through Nursing Research. New York: Macmillan
2.            George J. (1995) Nursing Theories: The Base for Professional Nursing Practice 3rd edition Norwalk CN: Appleton and Large
3.            George J. (2002) Nursing Theories: The Base for Professional Nursing Practice. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice – Hall inc.

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