A Case Study on Expanding the Concept of Caring from Individuals to Communities


Address correspondence to Betty Smith-Campbell, Wichita State University, 1921 Pineview Dr., Andover, KS 67002. Email: bcampbell@chp.twsu.edu


Caring has been described as the essence of nursing and some theorists assert that caring occurs only on the interpersonal level. The purpose of this paper is to illustrate caring beyond the individual to communities. Patterns of caring explicated from a case study were matched with concepts of caring defined in the literature. The concepts of caring were modified through a reevaluation of caring based on the findings from a community case study. Findings suggest concepts of caring as (1) a moral imperative, (2) an affect, (3) a personal interaction, and (4) an action, can be found at the community level. Modification of the original patterns of caring included broadening the concepts to include community interaction and preparatory caring action.