Attunement and Involvement: How Expert Nurses Support Patient Autonomy

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IJFAB: International Journal of Feminist Approaches to Bioethics


In this essay, I argue that the daily practice of expert nurses goes far toward enacting the kind of patient autonomy feminist bioethicists envision. Nursing theorists often utilize philosophical theories in their work, but bioethicists have not paid much attention to nursing theory and what it means to be an expert nurse. This is unfortunate because expert nurses do much in their daily practice to make the ideals for autonomy put forth by feminist bioethicists a reality. With this in mind, I bring these two literatures together in what I hope is a fruitful dialogue.