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Theories and Model of Disease Causation

Theory of Planned Behavior

A nursing theory provides a range of concepts, definitions, and assumptions obtained as a result of nursing models or other disciplines, which explain certain phenomena using identifying relationships among these approaches. Nursing theories form the basis of nursing practice, as they assist nurse professionals to make informed decisions with regards to providing care. The theory of planned behavior, which was proposed by Icek Ajzen, is one theory that can be applied to nursing professionals and their contribution to health care. Ajzen established the theory of planned behavior with the motive of refining the extrapolative influence of the model of reasoned action using amassing supposed behavioral control (Cornally, 2014). Scrutinizing the model, an individuals attitude towards a behavior, their subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control, collectively shape their intentions and behaviors (Cornally, 2014). The theory is composed of several essential concepts that explain the relationship between behavior and a person's beliefs and values.

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Normative beliefs and subjective norms invoke the views of society and judgment of persons close to the individual regarding certain actions and behaviors, and whether it is correct for one to perform such behavior (Cornally, 2014). Control beliefs and perceived behavioral control define a person's belief regarding the presence or absence of such factors that are capable of hindering or facilitating the performance of the behavior. Behavioral intention is defined as the readiness of an individual to perform a particular behavior and is considered an immediate antecedent to behavior. Finally, behavior is the observable response of a person to a specific situation, and it occurs as a result of compatible intentions and strong perceived behavioral control (Cornally, 2014).

Application of the Theory of Planned Behavior

The perception of planned behavior is highly pertinent to the infection mechanism both within and external the infirmary locale. Several hospital-acquired infections are easily preventable through behavior change involving both staff and patients. Instances of contaminations that can be effectively accomplished using integrating a transformation in behavior, namely catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTIs) and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus contaminations (MRSA). Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are a significant public health problem, as they increase the costs of health care significantly as well as the average length of stay for patients. However, according to Miller (2013), UTIs are capable of being easily prevented through simple strategies such as observing proper hygiene and using the appropriate catheter for different conditions of patients.

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Also, the same applies to cases of MRSA infections which are commonly acquired at acute care facilities, especially in cases where patients are hospitalized for extended periods or have invasive devices such as catheters and feeding tubes. Numerous people are carriers of MRSA, even though they are not capable of showing the symptoms of MRSA infection, and, apparently, they have spread the bacteria to other individuals through direct contact (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2017). The major strategies in the prevention of MRSA infections include hygiene of wound, keeping the patient's environment clean, avoiding sharing invasive medical equipment, and educating the patients and the health care professionals about MRSA (Sedwick, Lance-Smith, Reeder, & Nardi, 2012). A great number of these prevention strategies can be implemented successfully through behavior change that advocates personal and environmental hygiene for both patients and health care workers.

The theory of planned behavior can be applied in the prevention of hospital-acquired infections, including CAUTIs and MRSA infections. First, the institution is required to create an organizational culture that emphasizes hygiene and patient safety. This will help to adjust the normative beliefs in the institution regarding infection control such that all staff understand and uphold infection control best practices. Second, the hospital is required to provide the staff with additional training to raise awareness of CAUTIs and MRSA infections, and how to prevent them in a hospital setting. Therefore, the patients will receive the education through posters and other applicable patient education strategies. More awareness of the condition is likely to influence individuals' control beliefs and perceived behavioral control, as they will be more apparent to adopt behavior that puts them at a lower risk of contracting these infections. A supportive organizational culture and increased awareness of CAUTIs and MRSA infections are likely to lead to long-term behavior change among the patients and the staff, as they will feel more confident and empowered to prevent the spread of infections within and outside the hospital context.

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Incorporating Non-Nursing Theories to Nursing Theory and Practice

Nursing as a profession is guided by knowledge acquired from a wide range of disciplines, including psychology, leadership, and medicine among others. As a result, nursing research and practice should incorporate insights derived from these same disciplines to make it easier for nurses to deliver services to the communities. It is not advisable for nursing research and practice to include only nursing theories, as they are not capable of addressing the full range of occupational challenges that the nursing profession can face in their line of duty. For instance, a nurse manager is required to be equipped with leadership skills, which are essential for managing a team of nurses efficiently. Also, a nurse in any capacity requests to have an awareness of psychological theories and models, as they are highly applicable in their daily interactions with the patients. Finally, the various theories of any type of profession are capable of assisting to facilitate a multi-disciplinary approach to health care delivery, which is a cornerstone of modern healthcare practice.

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