"They can't see what we see" : voices and standpoint of twelve Plunket nurses : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Philosophy in Social Policy and Social Work at Massey University
This thesis is drawn from the responses of twelve Plunket nurses to questions in a semi-structured long interview with the aim of establishing their standpoints. On analysis the twelve separate standpoints came together as one voice. Although interview questions were wide-ranging, diverse topics were brought together by an emphasis on relationship and change. Change was seen to be occurring at all levels, from the practice of Plunket nurses and the Plunket organisation to the New Zealand Health system and the wider society. Responses to questions on motivation, career, education and the wider social context of Plunket nurses add depth to the study and reveal a consistency and integrity on the part of those who responded. Quality of relationship proved to be the key to the standpoint of these twelve nurses. The principles underlying their views on their practice are consistent with those outlined by Freire (1972), namely: love, humility, faith in people, mutual trust, hope and critical thinking. Responses reveal twelve nurses sharing a commitment to those who use their services. Such a commitment acts as a safeguard, protecting against a relationship characterised by dependency, and favouring a movement towards increasing capability and self-sufficiency for those using Plunket services. The standpoint that is reflected here, places these twelve Plunket nurses within a discipline of nursing which is based on a broad definition of health and a caring philosophy.