The purpose of this phenomenological research was to capture the meaning of caring as experienced by nurse managers during interactions with staff nurses. Data analysis was guided by the phenomenological method (Ray, 1985; van Manen, 1990). Essential themes of growth, listening, support, intuition, receiving gifts, and frustration were described by participants. Variant themes of touch, humor, flexibility, counseling, limitations, and competency also emerged. Interpretive themes of nurses’ way of being, reciprocal caring, and caring moment as transcendence were identified. The unity of meaning, which unfolded, is presented as a poetic expression. Implications for transforming nursing administration into a practice grounded in caring are presented.
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As the health care system in the United States is becoming increasingly more politically and economically oriented, the concept of political caring needs to be advanced in contemporary nursing practice (Ray, 1989, 2001; Turkel, 2001). The purpose of this article is to present a model outlining the process of policy analysis through a phenomenologica research study illuminating the life world descriptions of experiences of United States Air Force personnel with managed care in the military and the civilian health care system. This process shows how qualitative data are used to give voice to a moral crisis and contribute to health care policy.