Validating competency models
Peplau’s lifelong work was largely focused on extending Sullivan’s interpersonal theory for use in nursing practice.
Publication took four additional years because it was groundbreaking for a nurse to contribute this scholarly work without a coauthoring physician.The result may be experiential learning, improved coping strategies, and personal growth for both parties.Peplau describes the six nursing roles that lead into the different phases: The orientation phase is initiated by the nurse.Hospitals and physicians saw women in nursing as a source of free or inexpensive labor.Exploitation was not uncommon by nurse’s employers, physicians and educational providers. Peplau began her career in nursing in 1931 as a graduate of the Pottstown Hospital School of Nursing in Pottstown, PA.At the time, her research and emphasis on the give-and-take of nurse-client relationships was seen by many as revolutionary.
Peplau went on to form an interpersonal model emphasizing the need for a partnership between nurse and client as opposed to the client passively receiving treatment (and the nurse passively acting out doctor's orders).
She was a prolific writer and was equally well known for her presentations, speeches, and clinical training workshops.
Peplau vigorously advocated that nurses should become further educated so they could provide truly therapeutic care to patients rather than the custodial care that was prevalent in the mental hospitals of that era.
There she earned a bachelor's degree in interpersonal psychology in 1943.
At Bennington and through field experiences at Chestnut Lodge, a private psychiatric facility, she studied psychological issues with Erich Fromm, Frieda Fromm-Reichmann, and Harry Stack Sullivan.
This is the phase during which the nurse and the patient become acquainted, and set the tone for their relationship, which will ultimately be patient centered.