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Nurses' Perspectives of Encouraging Clients' Care-of-Self in a Short-Term Rehabilitation Unit Within a Long-Term Care Facility


  • Dr. Joanne K. Singleton PhD RN CS FNP

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      Pace University, 41 Park Row, Room 303, New York NY 10038, or by e-mail to
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    • Joanne K. Singleton is an associate professor of nursing at the Lienhard School of Nursing, Pace University, New York City and Westchester, and a clinical instructor in the Department of Family Practice, SUNY Health Science Center at Brooklyn, NY. Dr. Singleton is investigating strategies and processes nurses use to facilitate and patients use to attain care-of-self

Pace University, 41 Park Row, Room 303, New York NY 10038, or by e-mail to


This article presents a study conducted on a short-term rehabilitation unit in a long-term care facility. The purpose of the study was to explore, through qualitative methods, nurses' perspectives of encouraging clients to care for themselves. Although the literature suggested that encouraging self-care does not occur, the findings of this study showed that nurses have a broader view than what is currently known in nursing as “self-care.” Potential impediments to nursing practice were overcome by the development of nurse-client relationships through which the nurses encouraged clients in what is described throughout this study as “care-of-self” Rehabilitation nurses play an important role in helping clients to integrate and reclaim the care of their emerging new selves. Care-of-self may be critical to clients not only in reaching their outcome goals for discharge but also in maintaining outcomes beyond discharge.

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