Benner’s Theory and Usefulness
Comment on the usefulness of Benner’s work in your present or future role. Provide several examples. Patricia Benner formulated one of high middle range theory and was published in 1984.The model which applies the Dreyfus model outlines five stages of nursing, novice, advanced beginner, competent, proficient and expert(Benner1984). The central concepts of Benner’s model are those of competence, skill acquisition, experience, clinical knowledge and practical knowledge. (McEwen &Wills 2014).She also identifies seven domains of nursing practice: Helping role, Teaching or coaching function, Diagnostic client monitoring function, Effective management of rapidly changing situations, Administering and monitoring therapeutic interventions and regimes, Monitoring and ensuring quality of health care practice, Organizational and work role competencies (McEwen &Wills 2014).In my present role as unit educator, I have the opportunity to be also involved with nurse orientation including new graduate nurses and also with clinical advancement programs. Benner’s model is very useful, now as nursing in acute care settings has grown more complex, and it is hard to retain experienced nurses and there is an increased need to prevent nurse turnover.
According to Sorentino, (Sorrentino, 2013) Increased acuity level of patients, decreased length of stay ,increased throughput of patients and increased use of electronic records have made nursing more complex and challenging .Increased staff turnover in hospitals has caused nursing staff shortage and organization has to develop orientation and preceptor program that helped promote nurse retention and decreased costs. (Sorrentino, 2013). In our facility, creating an efficient model of preceptor program that helped nurses to function independently that was also cost effective .Benner’s novice to expert research describes nurses’ moves from rule governed behavior to an intuitive, automatic response. Ongoing development of the orientation program, preceptor development, preceptor assignments are included in the role of orientation and education coordinator of the unit. Developing a preceptor program for the unit was a need for the hospital and Benner’s model was used as per the decision by the nurse management and education department. Preceptors were chosen on the basis of their performance and documentation compliance according to unit standards. Documentation of compliance is validated using chart audits. Nurses who wanted to be preceptors also had to get approval from 3 peers and they write a 500 word essay stating why they want to be preceptors and had to attend an eight hour preceptor class.
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