Critical thinking plays an important role in nursing profession and every nurse, irrespective of his or her level of specialization, needs to have a fair amount of critical thinking capabilities in carrying out their day-to-day activities in the work place.
Before dwelling more on the need for critical thinking on the part of nurses, let us revisit the concept of critical thinking to understand what it is and its importance in the nursing profession.
Critical thinking refers to the invaluable skill of looking or thinking beyond the obvious and a sincere effort to find logical connection between the ideas. In other words, critical thinking is a special skill that is based firmly on core principles and theories that are guided by logical analysis and sound judgment.
As is the case with any other professions, a registered nurse, or even a certified nursing assistant in the nursing profession should have this special skill or trait of critical thinking.
The nurse, as part of his or her daily routines, has to take rational decisions taking into consideration all the pros and cons, and arriving at a firm conclusion that the suggested solution will be the correct and appropriate one.
Many people often confuse critical thinking with thinking critically. Both the terms are not the same and vastly differ in meaning. Critical thinking involves making a judgment, or taking a rational decision that would ultimately lead to a solution to the problem. Thinking critically often refers to criticizing or offering critical comments.
One of the essential things that differentiate critical thinking from thinking critically is that, critical thinking is related to Freedom of thought, whereas thinking critically refers to freedom from thought.
Nurses should always have that freedom of thought in doing their day-to-day activities so that they can use their critical thinking capabilities to decide the right course of treatment, taking into consideration all other aspects and exploring all possible avenues.
People engaged in nursing profession are entrusted with the responsibility of providing effective health care to patients, and as such are accountable for the life of the patients. Any wrong decision or activities done without any thought, or in haste, might result in having serious ramifications for the life of the person. Thus, the nurse should use critical thinking skills and ensure that the right thing that is required in treating the patient is carried out.
Critical thinking requires that all the available options are explored and only the ideal solution that best serves the requirement is found and executed. While providing treatment to the patients, a nurse should ensure that the patient will get relief from the treatment, does not have any complications, and will not suffer from pain or agony during the process of treatment.
The nurse, using his or her critical thinking abilities, should foresee the results of the treatment and be prepared to counter the results. Choosing the best alternative, and weighing the probable results using foresight are the hallmarks of critical thinking, and nurses should develop this invaluable skill armed with sound knowledge and conviction or self-belief.
honeybee writes about Medical Records Coding
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