Application of Mid-Range Nursing Theories Essay

Application of Mid-Range Nursing Theories Essay

Application of Mid-Range Nursing Theories Essay

The disciplinary focus of the nursing profession is to enhance the quality of life and health of individuals, families, communities and society. Contemporary nursing care is significantly impacted by the development of knowledge within the transforming health care environment and the need to nurture appropriate skills to enhance care provision to meet the increasing demands (Platt& Fronczek, 2020). Educating patients to attain self-care goals is one of these aspects and more theoretical models and research studies indicate the positive impact of self-care management through the application of patient-centric and evidence-based practice (EBP) interventions. Middle-range theories like Imogene King’s goal attainment theory are essential in helping nurses address problems in the practice, particularly among vulnerable populations (Adib-Hajbaghery & Tahmouresi, 2018). The essence of this paper is to describe the basic tenets of goal attainment theory and its application to enhance patient discharge teaching in adult diabetes care outpatient facility.

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Basic Tenets of Goal Attainment Theory

Developed in early 1960s, Imogene King’s theory describes a dynamic, interpersonal relationship where a patient grows and develops to reach certain life goals. The model proposes three interacting systems to the overall attainment of goals. These include personal, interpersonal, and social systems. Each of these aspects has a set of concepts that nurses apply to enhance care by developing a keen and interactive relationship with patients to attain set goals (Smith, 2020).The basic assumption of this model is that nurses and clients communicate information, set goals mutually and act on them to attain desired patient outcomes. In the personal system, the model considers each individual as unique and whole when interacting with the environment. Therefore, each individual should be considered as a personal system which dimensions of perception, self, growth and development. It also entails body image, personal space, coping and appropriate learning (Fronczek, 2022).  The theory also advances that each human being sees the world as a total person in making transactions with others and things in the environment. Perception influences nurse-patient relationship significantly since an accurate perception of self leads to better perception of others and has positive effects on body image, time and daily life events. A positive perception helps one to establish better interactions with their surrounding environment.

The interpersonal system develops when two or more people interact in small and large groups. The theory advances that nurse-patient relationship is reciprocal and effective understanding of this system leads to increased appreciation of other concepts like interaction, communication, transaction, role, and stress and stressors. Interpersonal system contributes to goal attainment as the nursing relationship is based on better communication emanating from better interactions between nurses and patients (Adib-Hajbaghery & Tahmouresi, 2018). For instance, communication in emergency situations is an essential aspect of providing better care as it enables nurses and patients and their families to provide critical information required to offer emergent care services. The tenet emphasizes that providers and patients in different situations attain health goal when both sides of relationship interact properly with each other and work collaboratively.

The third tenet of the model is the social system which is responsible for offering a framework for social interactions and interpersonal communication in workplace settings and institutions. The model asserts that the system helps nurses manage their caring roles and attain professional goals in hospital-based caring settings. Through the system, nurses also attain an appropriate status in the public as public health providers (Smith, 2020). System’s dimensions comprise of organization, authority, power, status and ability to make decisions. Nurse leaders can use organizational resources to get health goals whereas decision-making is dynamic as one attempt to attain set care goals.

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Application of the Theory in Nursing Care

Discharge processes can be tedious and time consuming in any setting, especially for patients who have been hospitalized for a while in inpatient facilities. Studies on improving the discharge process through use of nursing models emphasize the need to make the process seamless, fast, stress free (Platt & Fronczek, 2020). The use of the goal attainment theory is essential in this process as it allows providers to communicate vital information, especially on self-care management for patients to be discharged after attaining recovery in their facilities.

King’s goal attainment model is essential in the nursing process, from assessment to diagnosis and planning as well as implementation, rationale, and evaluation (Adib-Hajbaghery & Tahmouresi, 2018). Discharging a patient from an inpatient facility requires nurses to have all information, understand the diagnosis and intervention at the moment. The nurse also needs to evaluate the effects of treatment before making recommendations on how the patient with diabetes will enhance self-care at home. This implies that the advanced practice nurse evaluates the purpose of discharge teaching for both patients and providers (Park, 2021). For instance, discharge teaching should focus on ensuring that patients have access to necessary resources to improve care, can relay any information to the providers when need arise, and focus on behavioral change to attain quality outcomes. Discharge teaching would also entail having lessons on best practices like checking sugar levels using technology devices and apps developed for the purpose.


The goal attainment theory by King Imogene is a critical middle-range nursing model that allows nurses to offer quality care to patients by focusing on set goals. The model demonstrates the need for nurses to develop an interactive setting where they engage patients to understand the different aspects of care delivery, especially the integration of self-care approach. The tenets of the model emphasize effective and dependent interactions to enhance provision of optimal care to patients in different settings, including those in diabetes outpatient facilities.


Adib-Hajbaghery, M.& Tahmouresi M.  (2018). Nurse–patient relationship based on the

Imogene King’s theory of goal attainment. Nursing and Midwifery Studies,7:141-4.

Fronczek, A. E. (2022). Ushering in a New Era for King’s Conceptual System and Theory of

Goal Attainment. Nursing Science Quarterly, 35(1).

Park, B. M. (2021, June). Effects of Nurse-Led Intervention Programs Based on Goal Attainment

Theory: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. In Healthcare, 9(6): 699. Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute.

Platt, L. S. & Fronczek, A. (2020). Using a Fuzzy Framework for applying King’s Theory of

Goal Attainment to Improve Hospital Acquired Infection Resilience. Proceedings of the International Symposium on Human Factors and Ergonomics in Health Care, 9(1).

Smith, M. C. (2020).Nursing theories & nursing practice (5th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: F.A.


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Application of Mid-Range Nursing Theories

Present the basic tenets of one of the theories listed in the readings for this activity
Apply this theory as a framework to modify patient discharge teaching in the setting of your choice

Suggested Readings & Materials:

Read at least four middle range theories of personal interest listed below in Smith, M. C. (2020) Nursing theories & nursing practice (5th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: F.A. Davis

Chapter 6: Hildegard Peplau’s Nurse-Patient Relationship & its Applications
Chapter 6: Ida Jean Orlando’s Dynamic Nurse-Patient Relationship
Chapter 9: Imogene King’s Theory of Goal Attainment
Chapter 20: Afaf Meleis’ Transitions Theory
Chapter 21: Katherine Kolcaba’s Comfort Theory
Chapter 22: Joanne Duffy’’s Quality-Caring Model
Chapter 24: Patricia Liehr & Mary Jane Smith’s Story Theory
Chapter 25: The Community Nursing Practice ModelChapter 28: Troutman-Jordan’s Theory of Successful Aging
Chapter 29: Barrett’s Theory of Power as Knowing Participation in Change
Chapter 31: Kristen Swanson’s Theory of Caring
Chapter 32: Adeline Falk-Rafael’s Critical Caring Theory
Chapter 33: Katie Eriksson’s Theory of Caritative Caring

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