Alvarez: Nurses and Family Planning

STUDENT nursing training is a combination of theoretical and practical learning experiences that will aid nursing students to obtain the knowledge, skills, and attitudes for providing nursing care. The Related Learning Experience (RLE) in nursing is the main part of nursing education that builds students competence in their actual nurse-patient care. Hence, RLE is an essential and integral part of the nursing education program.

Last May 22, 2019, the Ateneo de Davao University 2nd year nursing students, as part of their RLE, had its return demonstration on how to counsel mothers on natural family planning method. The students performed the G-A-T-H-E-R method on counseling. The G stands for greeting the client respectfully, A is for asking the client her concerns and previous use, T is telling the client about the different family planning methods, H is for helping the client to make the decision, E is for explaining how to use the method and R is for informing the client when to return for follow-up. The students also did not forget to mention during their demonstration that it is important to offer full information about the risks and benefits of the various natural family planning methods.

When students were asked about the principles of natural family planning methods, it was pleasing to hear them say no two people will have similar values and attitudes on family planning, that people will have diverse views because of their different experiences and values, and nurses as service providers may have their personal values that may be different from others.

Further, it was more heartwarming to hear them say that as a nurse counselor in the future, they will not enforce their own values over their clients and that will always have to respect others’ values and beliefs.

Nurses really play an integral, vital, and incomparable role in the healthcare system, be it on providing health care to the sick or health promotion to the well. Family nurse counselors are not only indispensable but helpful in promoting natural family methods.


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