How to an essay write discussing the King’s Conceptual System of care

How to write an essay discussing the King’s Conceptual System of care

The relationship between nurses and patients is crucial in the attainment of quality care. The patient is observed to acquire a passive role while nurses are experts during care delivery. King’s conceptual system is observed to explain this relationship between nurses and patients that influences health outcomes. According to King, the goal of nursing is health promotion, maintenance or restoration of health, and caring for the dying (Smith & Parker, 2015). This theory explains how three systems including the personal, interpersonal and social systems interact to achieve desired outcomes. Under this conceptual model is the theory of goal attainment that addresses how nurses interact with nurses and patients to achieve health goals. This discussion focuses on King’s conceptual system and theory of goal attainment and their significant impact on theory-based nursing practice.

Interacting Systems

King described three systems that constantly interact to influence health outcomes in the theory of goal attainment. The systems include the personal system, interpersonal system, and social system. Each system is defined by various concepts as explained below.

Personal System

The personal system represents individuals, either the patient or the nurse. To comprehend human beings as persons, King explained various concepts that make up the personal system. For example, perception represents the ability of a person to organize, interpret, and transform information from sense data and memory (Smith & Parker, 2015). Another crucial concept is ‘self’ which is composed of thoughts, feels and inner awareness of existence. It constitutes the individual’s inner world that is distinct from the outside world and other people. Another concept is growth and development that represents how people maneuver from a potential for achievement to self-actualization. Space is another component of the personal system that is defined by the physical area and behaviors of the occupants. The personal system is also defined by the time that indicates the duration between events and is experienced uniquely by each individual. Lastly, each individual exhibits learning as a concept that consists of processes, sensory perceptions, and critical thinking.

Interpersonal System

King explained that interpersonal systems are formed when two or more individuals interact. The complexity of this system is dependent on the number of interacting individuals. While taking care of the patient, King recognized the existence of the interpersonal system as represented by various concepts. For example, communication should exist between the two individuals either directly or indirectly through telephones and other media (Balasi et al., 2020). When the two individuals are interacting, each assumes certain roles that include social, complex, or situational roles. Another concept in this system is a transaction that represents a process of communication that leads to the achievement of goals. Lastly, interaction at the interpersonal level involves stress that represents a dynamic state of interaction with the environment to maintain balance, growth, and regulation of stressors.

Social System

Social systems are composed of large groups that have common interests and goals. These systems that might include religious, educational, and healthcare systems have a huge influence on the health outcomes of the patient. King explained different concepts that make up the social system. Power represents the capacity to use available resources to achieve set goals. Each individual has power depending on the available resources and environmental forces. Another crucial concept is the status that the patient or individual occupies in a group. The status is observed to be accompanied by privileges, duties, and obligations that determine the well-being of individuals (Smith & Parker, 2015). Apart from these concepts, King also stressed the importance of authority, organization, and decision-making aspects that have an impact on achieving health outcomes.

Influence on Goal Attainment

King’s theory offers insight to healthcare providers on how to interact with individuals and other groups during healthcare delivery. The theory emphasizes the importance of involving the patient in making decisions about their care and the process of interaction with nurses. The theory of goal attainment demonstrates how nurses form relationships with patients to influence positive outcomes. Through this theory, the nurse understands that positive outcomes are dependent on personal system factors like perception, learning, coping, and time (da Silva & Ferreira, 2016). The patient out to understand themselves to attain set goals. At the interpersonal level, goal attainment is influenced by factors like communication, stress management, and transactional processes. For example, the nurse and the patient mutually identify goals and agree on means to implement the goals. Lastly, the social system’s domain recognizes the role of power, authority, organization, and decision-making in attaining goals (Smith & Parker, 2015). It helps nurses to explore different avenues like education and interprofessional collaboration to influence patient outcomes.

Clinical Quality Problem

Despite the presence of many concepts in King’s theory, the major point is on transactional relationships that determine the participation of the patient (Smith & Parker, 2015). This theory can be applied to solve problems related to quality in healthcare through the involvement of the nurse, the patient, and other systems. For example, an increase in hospital readmission rates is a clinical quality problem that can be defined using King’s theory. For instance, the personal systems approach defines factors like perception, learning, growth and development, and self-awareness that can influence quality outcomes (Balasi et al., 2020). The nurse understands that the level of education of the patient and perceptions towards illness influence medication intake and hygiene that can lead to readmission.

The second aspect that can help define a clinical quality problem is the interpersonal system interaction. Under this system, I believe communication is the most crucial aspect that influences quality outcomes. Communication acts as the key to trust between patients and nurses. For example, the issue of patient readmission can be defined by the relationship between providers and patients during care and other factors like follow-up that determine readmission rates. Apart from communication, other factors like interaction and assuming roles can help influence quality. The other aspect that helps define quality in healthcare is the social system theory. Under the social system are concepts like power, authority, and decision-making that have huge influences on quality. For instance, healthcare organizations have the power to implement changes that can improve quality. The incorporation of technology and fighting for the rights of patients through advocacy can help influence quality.

Application of King’s Theory

The application of King’s theory follows the nursing process towards the goal of health attainment through interaction and the formation of a partnership. One area in nursing practice that this theory can be used is the improvement of patient satisfaction scores that are now part of quality assessment in healthcare. The Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) survey scores are used to determine how well patients are treated when seeking healthcare. The scores are then analyzed and used to provide reimbursements to hospitals based on their performance. To improve these scores, healthcare organizations implement quality improvement programs aimed at improving patient experiences.

The nursing process can be used to improve patient satisfaction based on King’s theory. To begin with, the assessment part takes place through the interaction with the patient and the nurse. The nurse gathers information at a personal level like knowledge and perception that can have an impact on patient satisfaction. The second phase is the establishment of a diagnosis that clearly defines the problem and related factors. For example, poor patient satisfaction can be related to the existence of poor communication between nursing teams and patients.

The planning phase involves both the patient and the nurse working together to formulate a way of solving the issue. Emphasis is put on the creation of interpersonal relationships and considering factors like communication and role definition that are crucial at the interpersonal system level (de Silva & Ferreira, 2016). The implementation phase involves the continuation of transaction and in this case, it can involve other systems like the organization. Lastly, evaluation involves determining whether the goals were achieved. To ensure the whole process is a success, King emphasizes the involvement of patients in their care.

Quality Committee Alignment of Outcomes

King’s conceptual model recognizes nursing as a process of action, reaction, and interaction through which the nurse and the patient share information to achieve set goals. The goal of nursing is that of maintaining the individual’s health so that they can function in their roles (Smith & Parker, 2015). During quality improvement, the committee can align outcomes through setting goals that are realistic and involving patients in setting these goals. The committee should understand the patient, their needs, and involve wider systems like the organizational management that may have the necessary power to influence outcomes. Additionally, alignment of outcomes should include the utilization of the nursing process to effectively interpret the patient’s needs and plan processes that can meet the desired outcomes.

Additional Nursing Theory

The theory of nursing that aligns with quality of practice improvement is Florence Nightingale’s environmental theory. This theory emphasizes the alteration of the patient’s environment to influence their health outcomes (Alejandro, 2017). The theory focuses on the care of the patient rather than the nursing process. It stresses the relationship between the nurse and the patient whereby unique factors are identified and modified to influence positive health outcomes. Applying this theory today, the nurse works to redesign the patient’s environment that includes organization systems and other crucial aspects like staffing that have a huge influence on health. Incorporating technologies also serve to alter the patient’s environment to bring about quality and improved outcomes.


In summary, King’s theory discusses three areas including personal, interpersonal, and social systems that influence health outcomes. These interrelated concepts define how nurses and patients interact to attain mutually set goals. While helping the patient to achieve set outcomes, King’s model emphasizes the role of the nurse as that of helping the individuals maintain their health so that they can function in their roles.


Alejandro J. I. (2017). Lessons learned through nursing theory. Nursing47(2), 41–42.

Balasi, L. R., Elahi, N., Beiranvand, S., Tavakoli, P., & Balasi, R. R. (2020). The Effectiveness of Nursing Interventions Based on King’s Theory: A Systematic Review. Advances in Nursing and Midwifery29(3), 41-47.

da Silva, R. N., & Ferreira, M. (2016). Users’ participation in nursing care: An element of the Theory of Goal Attainment. Contemporary Nurse52(1), 74–84.

Smith, M. C., & Parker, M. E. (2015). Nursing Theories and Nursing Practice (4th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: F.A. Davis.

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