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Professional nurses’ lived experience of practising caring presence – Ronel Hobbs

In an effort to gain a deeper understanding of presence, Mrs Ronel Hobbs undertook a research study as part of her masters degree. The purpose of Mrs Hobbs’s study was to explore and describe professional nurses’ lived experience of practising caring presence in the context of a rural public hospital in the North West province, South Africa. She applied a Husserlian descriptive phenomenological design.

Mrs Hobbs invited professional nurses working at a rural public hospital to share their experience of practicing caring presence with her. She held interviews with 10 participants and obtained very interesting and rich findings.

The findings could be grouped into broad themes that resembled the ways in which the participants experienced caring presence, namely professional caring presence, ethical caring presence, personal caring presence, healing caring presence and also, what caring presence is not.

Mrs Hobbs concluded that professional nurses experience practising caring presence as fulfilling, professionally as well as personally, as an expression of their passion for the profession, as a way of portraying ethical care, a willingness to be personally present for patients, and as a healing experience that involves being dedicated and taking care of patients holistically. In addition, they indicated that unprofessional and unethical behaviour and the depersonalisation of patients are barriers that hinder the practise of caring presence.

Mrs Hobbs published a scientific article on her study. Her dissertation is available at the North-West University’s library.

Thank you, Ronel for your valuable contribution to our understanding of presence. We wish you well!

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