Date of Award

Spring 1979

Degree Type

Thesis - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)




The purpose of this descriptive study was to identify the nursing needs of young adult emergency department clients utilizing Dorothea Orem's concept of nursing. The clients' self-care assets and self-care deficits were identified, yielding nursing diagnoses. A nurse investigator gave professional nursing care to clients, based upon Dorothea Orem's concept of nursing. The end result of the nursing intervention was the identification of nursing diagnoses specific to the young adult emergency department client. Results revealed that three nursing diagnoses were common to each client participating in the study. They included:

(1) mild anxiety, (2) alterations in comfort: discomfort, and (3) alterations in ability to perform selfcare activities. The nursing diagnosis of failure to meet sequential developmental tasks occurred with 80 percent of the clients. This study offered insights into such areas as role definition for the emergency department nurse, education of the emergency department nurse, outcome criteria for the emergency department client, and nursing strategies in the emergency department. Replication of this study with larger groups of young adults, different age groups, and with a different conceptual model for nursing practice was outlined as recommendations for further study.



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