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From linear care plan through concept map to Concepto-Plan: the creation of an innovative and holistic care plan

Faculty Advisor




care plan, mind map, concept map, nursing, education, Canada

Abstract (summary)

Linear care plans have traditionally been used in nursing education to support nursing students in identifying potential and actual health care problems, and to follow up on those issues with nursing interventions. However, the linear care plan does not support the nursing student with learning in-depth critical thinking, clinical reasoning, creative thinking, and other ways of thinking. Concept mapping was introduced as a way to support the nursing student to improve upon critical thinking and clinical reasoning and to identify relationships among the patient's health care problems. The present manuscript features the development and evaluation of the Concepto-Plan (C-P), an innovative, holistic care plan that moves away from the linear care plan and improves upon the concept map care plan. The C-P focuses on the relationships among the data clusters and the nursing diagnoses and can be used to enhance the therapeutic relationship between the patient and the nursing student. Quality improvement data supports the effectiveness of the C-P for nursing students to organize and prioritize client-centred care while experiencing meaningful learning, professional self-reflection, clinical reasoning, creative and critical thinking skills and the ability to provide an individualized holistic care plan. As a result, the C-P has been integrated into the curriculum in two different nursing programs in two Canadian provinces.

Publication Information

McDonald, M. S., Neumeier, M., Olver, M. E. (2018). From linear care plan through concept map to Concepto-Plan: The creation of an innovative and holistic care plan. Nurse Education in Practice, 31, p. 171-176.


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