Virginia Henderson's nature of Nursing theory and quality of life for the older adult
A descriptive correlational study was conducted to determine if attainment of Virginia Henderson's (1966) basic care needs can be equated with a quality of life for the older adult. A model entitled "Quality of Life for the Older Adult" was developed utilizing Henderson's (1966) nature of nursing theory as the theroretical framework.
The researcher developed instrument, Henderson's Basic Nursing Care Needs Opinionnaire, was utilized to measure attainment of Henderson's 14 basic care needs. Internal consistency reliability was established for the instrument with a Cronbach alpha of.97. Ferrans and Powers' (1985) Quality of Life Index was utilized to identify a quality of life for the older adult. The study included 174 subjects obtained from rural community American Association of Retired Persons meetings.
The findings of this study suggested that attainment of Henderson's basic care needs can be equated with a quality of life for the older adult. The hypothesis which stated that there was no significant relationship between the level of attainment of Henderson's basic nursing care needs and the level of quality of life for the older adult was rejected and the alternate was accepted. The second null hypothesis was also rejected and a significant relationship was found between quality of life and the researcher identified concepts of perceived health status, social activity level, and control over changing lifestyle. The third hypothesis stated there was no significant difference between the self-reported demographic variables and quality of life for the older adult. Significant differences were found between older adults who live alone and older adults who live with their spouse and older adults who had a yearly income of less than $20,000 and those individuals who received a yearly income of greater than $30,000. No significant difference was found between males and females and quality of life for the older adult.
Social activity level accounted for 38% of the variance for the quality of life for the older adult. Social activity level and perceived health status accounted for 40% of the variance for the quality of life for the older adult.