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“Providing Structure” as a Psychiatric Nursing Intervention: A Review of the Literature

Authors

  • L. Amar Voogt RN, CNS, Msc,

    Head Care and Support, Nurse Researcher, PhD student, Corresponding author
    1. Mental Health Care Hospital GGZ Noord-Holland Noord, Heiloo, Netherlands
    2. Quality of Care/Nursing Science, Radboud University, Nijmegen, Netherlands
    • Regio Noordwest, Philadelphia Zorg, Heerhugowaard, Netherlands
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  • Annet Nugter PhD,

    Head
    1. Research Department, Mental Health Care Hospital GGZ Noord-Holland Noord, Heiloo, Netherlands
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  • Peter J.J. Goossens RN, MANP, PhD,

    Professor in Mental Health
    1. Expertise Centre of Health, Social Work & Technology, Saxion, University of Applied Sciences, Deventer, Netherlands
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  • Theo van Achterberg RN, PhD

    Professor
    1. Nursing Science, Centre for Quality of Care Research, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Nijmegen, Netherlands
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  • Conflict of Interest Statement

    The authors declare no actual or potential conflicts of interest.

Author contact:

a.voogt@hetnet.nl, a.voogt@philadelphia.nl, with a copy to the Editor: gpearson@uchc.edu

Abstract

Purpose

The focus is on a nursing intervention called “providing structure” (PS). This label does not exist in the Nursing Interventions Classification. The following three questions were asked: (a) How is PS defined? (b) What are the goals of PS? and (c) What is the evidence regarding the effectiveness of PS?

Design and Method

A systematic literature review. Forty articles, predominantly qualitative studies of PS, were selected for review.

Findings

Regarding PS, three elements were mentioned: to impose and maintain rules and limits; to assess the condition of the patient; and to interact with the patient. The goals for PS related to patient security, making expectations explicit, and recovering from illness. Major findings were reviewed, but little was found about the effectiveness of PS.

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