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Clinical Reasoning




  • Describes the nature of clinical reasoning with reference to the decision theory, the information-processing theory; and the skills-acquisition theory
  • Outlines the politics involved with clinical reasoning
  • Discusses the conflicts that can arise between clinical reasoning and documentation
  • Outlines effective documentation

Clinical reasoning is the process of reaching clinical conclusions through professional judgement, knowledge and experience. It also involves an understanding of the politics of clinical practice. Nurses in aged care need to understand the regulatory, political and social customs that dictate the care that is provided, when it is provided and who provides it. This chapter instructs nurses on how to understand Clinical Reasoning, its politics and its conflicts with documentation.


Contents include

  • Introduction
  • The nature of clinical reasoning
    • Three theories
    • Nurses' understanding of those in their care
  • Politics of clinical reasoning and documentation
  • Conflicts between clinical reasoning and documentation
    • Theoretical plans and clinical experience
    • Differing expectations
  • Effective documentation
  • Conclusion
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Author / Editor Biographies

Infection control
Bart is currently Manager of the Information Management Unit, Sub-acute and Primary Health Care, Northern Adelaide Local Health Network (NALHN). In this role he is responsible for future-casting, identification of relevant evidence bases for PHC and Sub-Acute practice together with research facilitation and reporting on practice activity and outcomes. Since 1978 he has worked in the acute, community and aged care sectors as well as in private, NGO and public institutions.

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