The field of nursing has benefited significantly from the inputs and contributions of different scholars and theorists. Competent practitioners rely on such ideas and concepts to improve their philosophies and meet the demands of more patients. Ramona Mercer is one of the outstanding scholars and professionals who presented guidelines for improving maternal and pediatrics care. This paper gives a detailed analysis of her history, achievements in the field of nursing, and the impact of such concepts on today’s nursing practice.
Many historians in the field of nursing identify Ramona Thieme Mercer as a great scholar and caregiver whose contributions remain timeless. She was born on 4th October 1929 (Meighan). She was able to earn her nursing diploma after completing her course successfully from St. Margaret’s School of Nursing in Alabama (Meighan). In 1962, she obtained a bachelor’s degree in nursing from the prestigious University of New Mexico (Meighan). After graduating with a master’s degree in the field of maternal child nursing in the year 1964, Mercer became an instructor and a head nurse in a pediatric unit (Meighan). She worked in maternal nursing roles for around a decade after which she decided to pursue a doctoral degree in maternity nursing (Meighan). She succeeded in developing the Maternal Role Attainment Theory, a model that remains critical in pediatric and maternal healthcare.
Through most of her works, Mercer was able to present numerous ideas and insights that transformed prenatal, postnatal, and pediatric care. Having worked in different intrapartum and newborn units for around 30 years, this professional observed and proposed evidence-based approaches that could guide more nurses to assume various maternal roles (Erfina et al. 223). In the book Perspectives on Adolescent Health Care, Transitions in a Woman’s Life, and Parents at Risk, Mercer outlined several processes and ideas for encouraging healthcare workers to take maternal and perinatal care seriously.
With these insights and concepts, Mercer developed the identified theory to guide nurses to offer evidence-based interventions and encourage mothers to relate efficiently with their children. She suggested that there was a need for a superior interactional and developmental process (Erfina et al. 223). She also argued that mothers could succeed in bonding with their infants, developing additional skills in caretaking activities, expressing joy and pleasure to the child, and bonding effectively.
Mercer proposed four unique steps or processes that mothers of newborn babies and nurses could use to deliver positive health outcomes. The anticipatory stage is the first and it revolves around psychological, emotional, and social adaptation to the unique maternal responsibility. This is followed by the formal stage whereby the mother and nurses remain involved during birth and engage in behaviors that resonate with the anticipated social system. The third one is the informal stage whereby the targeted woman creates her unique strategy for mothering that is by the established clinical guidelines (Erfina et al. 225). The fourth one is called the personal stage whereby the mother finds it possible to experience competence, harmony, and confidence in the new role.
Impact on Modern Nursing Practice
The identified theory has become the leading model that guides nurses and clinicians to offer the best support to mothers of newborn babies. Practitioners in different pediatric and prenatal settings have been relying on the ideas Mercer presents to guide their patients. Many mothers get evidence-based insights for positively relating with their babies and guiding the targeted children to find their true identities throughout their developmental stages (Erfina et al. 224). Nurses working in the field of perinatal care can guide every expectant woman to start thinking about the child even before birth. Such professionals engage in dialogue and share positive concepts to ensure that more women are prepared for their babies.
The stages outlined in Mercer’s nursing framework guides nurses to provide the relevant resources and tools to encourage mothers to develop the best connections with their children. This practice creates a scenario whereby different women are willing to associate with their babies effectively, be involved in various caretaking roles, and promote the best social systems (Osorio-Castaño et al. 300). Since practitioners have been keen to rely on these contributions, it has become possible for women to raise their children efficiently, provide the relevant vaccinations, offer high-quality care, and eventually record meaningful results by the fourth stage of Mercer’s theory.
In pediatric nursing, more practitioners have been on the frontline to embrace and apply Mercer’s concepts to guide more mothers to perform the best maternal roles. The attributes associated with this model make it possible for women to consider the best practices and make child-rearing a lifespan agenda. This process has become critical in minimizing medical complications, empowering babies, and ensuring that they grow up to become responsible members of society. Erfina et al. believe that children who receive high-quality care and support during early childhood will become more responsible and manage their emotions efficiently (226). This kind of understanding continues to encourage different stakeholders in maternal health to consider some of the best procedures to apply Mercer’s theory.
Some psychologists and therapists have collaborated with nurses to apply this theory and address different forms of stress that emerge before and after childbirth. The issues of incompetence and uncertainty for new mothers have been addressed successfully through the use of Mercer’s concepts. These insights and developments reveal that the works and contributions of this theorist remain critical and essential in the field of nursing. Children who are raised by different mothers who have benefited from this framework tend to have higher chances of becoming successful (Osorio-Castaño et al. 301). Such observations explain why the use of the theory remains timeless and appropriate for pediatric and maternal nursing.
Practitioners and clinicians working in different settings should take Mercer’s theory seriously and apply it to guide more mothers before and after birth. They can also consider the relevance of continuous learning to acquire additional theories and combine them with Mercer’s model and support their patients (Osorio-Castaño et al. 302). The process of monitoring can take deliver additional results and make it possible for mothers in different regions to become satisfied and ensure that their babies eventually become responsible adults.
The above discussion has identified Ramona Mercer as one of the greatest scholars and theorists whose works have supported the development of nursing practice. She presented a superior and evidence-based model that could guide more mothers to assume and appreciate their roles and take good care of their babies. Modern-day nurses continue to embrace and apply the theory in a maternal setting to enhance practice and meet the demands of more women and their children.
Erfina, Erfina, et al. “Adolescent Mothers’ Experiences of the Transition to Motherhood: An Integrative Review.” International Journal of Nursing Sciences, vol. 6, no. 2, 2019, pp. 221-228.
Meighan, Molly. “Mercer’s becoming a Mother Theory in Nursing Practice.” Nurse Key, 2020. Web.
Osorio-Castaño, Jhon H., et al. “Preparation for Motherhood during Pregnancy: A Concept Analysis.” Investigación y Educación en Enfermería, vol. 35, no. 3, 2017, pp. 295-305.