The self as healer: reflections from a nurse's journey

AACN Clin Issues. 2000 Feb;11(1):17-26. doi: 10.1097/00044067-200002000-00004.


Complementary and alternative medicine is rapidly making its way into the mainstream through the addition of a variety of therapies in existing settings. Yet, in national surveys, the public seems interested not only in alternative therapies, but also in a more holistic form of healthcare. Nurses have a critical role to play in creating such a healthcare system. Recovering their own identity as healers is a first step in that direction. This article explores the topic of the self as healer through four key questions: what is healing, who or what is the locus of healing, how can nurses facilitate healing, and how does one become a healer?

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Complementary Therapies / organization & administration*
  • Critical Care / organization & administration*
  • Critical Care / psychology
  • Holistic Nursing / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Job Description
  • Nursing Staff, Hospital / organization & administration*
  • Nursing Staff, Hospital / psychology*
  • Philosophy, Nursing
  • Self Concept