Total Patient Care Model as a Nursing Approach


The possibilities of modern nursing are not limited to elementary care for patients and the provision of vital assistance to them. Due to the development of this area of medicine, a sufficient number of theories and concepts have been developed, and each of them can and should be applied to specific cases and used as the model of work. In order to determine the features of such theories applied in practice, it is possible to consider some of them within a certain medical setting.

In particular, the total patient care model, our patient-centered approach, will be analyzed from the point of view of its relevance to the Department of Traumatology and Surgery where patients are forced to experience severe inconvenience caused by surgical interventions. Also, additional nursing models will be considered for comparison and obtaining information on their application in medical settings. The analysis of different approaches is a valuable tool that allows junior medical personnel to choose the best mechanisms for caring for patients of a particular profile.

Nursing Care Model Description

The total patient care model is a nursing approach based on total devotion and concentration on each individual patient. All the stages of work are carefully planned, and a high degree of autonomy is maintained. Based on this approach, medical employees perform assigned tasks responsibly, helping patients in the recovery of temporarily lost functions. In relation to the considered medical facility (the Department of Traumatology and Surgery), this model is designed to provide comprehensive support and facilitate relief. Patients within this medical setting are usually unable to perform many daily procedures.

Moreover, quite often, the treatment process is accompanied by pain and nervous breakdowns. Based on the experience gained in this setting about a year ago, nurses were the main stakeholders promoting the concept by providing comprehensive care and trying to concentrate on any possible spiritual help. Patients observed in the department suffered from acute pain, and the person did their best to facilitate the recovery process. All these peculiarities have become the reason for choosing this model and analyzing its peculiarities.

The application of this nursing model in practice may be explained by using appropriate academic sources mentioning the concept. According to Moore, Titler, Low, Dalton, and Sampselle (2015), the patient-centered care model is the approach that should be maintained in medical institutions at the legislative level. In the context of the setting considered, this nursing concept is essential since the provision of qualified care is an integral part of nursing practice. Also, Moore et al. (2015) argue that a high degree of professionalism is required to implement the conditions of this model. In case the nursing staff does not have sufficient experience in working with patients after surgical interventions, proper care will not be implemented, and the approach will not justify itself.

Another academic resource that mentions the nursing model in question is the article by Constand, MacDermid, Dal Bello-Haas, and Law (2014). As the author’s remark, “patient-centered care is thought to have many benefits and has been proposed as a means of achieving better health outcomes, greater patient satisfaction, and reduced health costs” (Constand et al., 2014, p. 271). This model is considered in the context of the requirements for it, and such working aspects as a partnership, effective communication, and health promotion need to be maintained.

A patient-centered approach is evaluated in terms of its effectiveness in different conditions, including rehabilitation departments where patients undergo the courses of therapy after surgical interventions. The value of the model is emphasized, and its relevance in nursing practice is constantly mentioned by the authors (Constand et al., 2014). Therefore, the opinions presented do not differ significantly and support almost identical arguments.

A Different Nursing Model and Resources Background

In addition to the aforementioned patient-centered model of care, there are other nursing concepts, and some of them involve completely different approaches to care and the work of nurses in general. One of them is functional nursing, and Dubois et al. (2013) describe some of its peculiarities. The authors note that the features of this approach “reflect a view of nursing as a broad set of tasks that can be carried out by a variety of workers” (Dubois et al., 2013, p. 111). Functional nursing is the approach that is not focused on specific complex tasks and implies regular and overall control. Thus, within the framework of the Department of Traumatology and Surgery, this concept is unlikely to be appropriate.

Another source where the considered model is one of the basic ones is the article by Fairbrother, Chiarella, and Braithwaite (2015). This concept is considered as the method of providing nursing care in terms of maintaining the nurse-patient relationships and periodic monitoring by medical staff. The authors argue that it is difficult for junior medical specialists to pay much attention to each person in the department while adhering to the provisions of this model (Fairbrother et al., 2015). Therefore, its application in the Department of Traumatology and Surgery is not effective, and the aforementioned patient-centered approach is more suitable.

Possible Nursing Care Model

In the Department of Traumatology and Surgery, another nursing model may be applicable. Based on its terms, it provides patients with “direct care,” and individual work is constantly conducted (Smolowitz et al., 2015). It is the primary model of care, and its terms imply the continuity of nursing care as one of the main aspects of this practice. The staff of the medical departments where this concept is maintained works in small groups and the exchange of experience is one of the integral conditions.

According to Smolowitz et al. (2015), the quality of activities based on primary care is largely achieved through successful collaboration among employees and their interaction within a particular medical setting. This model is in many ways reminiscent of the patient-centered approach and is its potential substitute while implementing it in the Department of Traumatology and Surgery.


The detailed assessment of nursing models allows identifying those that are most suited to specific conditions and give an opportunity to provide patients with comprehensive care. In the Department of Traumatology and Surgery, the patient-centered approach allows focusing nursing activities on helping people after operations and the restoration of temporarily lost wellbeing. The model of functional nursing is not similar to the aforementioned concept since its conditions determine the practice of staff in the context of shared responsibilities. In addition to these two approaches, the method of primary care may also be applied to the department considered. All the analyzed models are widely used in nursing practice and allow patients to recover as quickly as possible.


Constand, M. K., MacDermid, J. C., Dal Bello-Haas, V., & Law, M. (2014). Scoping review of patient-centered care approaches in healthcare. BMC Health Services Research, 14(1), 271. Web.

Dubois, C. A., D’amour, D., Tchouaket, E., Clarke, S., Rivard, M., & Blais, R. (2013). Associations of patient safety outcomes with models of nursing care organization at unit level in hospitals. International Journal for Quality in Health Care, 25(2), 110-117. Web.

Fairbrother, G., Chiarella, M., & Braithwaite, J. (2015). Models of care choices in today’s nursing workplace: Where does team nursing sit? Australian Health Review, 39(5), 489-493. Web.

Moore, J. E., Titler, M. G., Low, L. K., Dalton, V. K., & Sampselle, C. M. (2015). Transforming patient-centered care: Development of the evidence informed decision making through engagement model. Women’s Health Issues, 25(3), 276-282. Web.

Smolowitz, J., Speakman, E., Wojnar, D., Whelan, E. M., Ulrich, S., Hayes, C., & Wood, L. (2015). Role of the registered nurse in primary health care: Meeting health care needs in the 21st century. Nursing Outlook, 63(2), 130-136. Web.