Examining assumptions underlying nursing practice with children and families

Pediatr Nurs. Sep-Oct 1998;24(5):467-9.


Family-centered care is increasingly considered "best practice." Yet, recent research points to a discrepancy between philosophy and practice (Bruce & Ritchie, 1997). To make family-centered care a full reality will require the examination of the assumptions underlying the practice of individual health care providers, agencies, and institutions. Typical models underling the provision of health care today include the medical model, the child-focused model, the family-focused model, and the family-centered model. Understanding the assumptions of each of these models is important. Identifying them in practice will require a process of reflection. Once assumptions underlying the current practice of an individual or institution are made conscious, assumptions that interfere with family-centered practices can be identified.

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child Welfare*
  • Evidence-Based Medicine
  • Family Health*
  • Humans
  • Models, Nursing*
  • Patient-Centered Care / organization & administration*
  • Pediatric Nursing / organization & administration*
  • Philosophy, Nursing*
  • Self-Assessment