Holistic Nursing


A holistic nurse can be defined as “all nursing practice that has healing the whole person as its goal” (AHNA, 1998) A holistic nurse focuses on promoting and optimizing health and wellness, assist in healing, educates on primary prevention of illness and injury, alleviating suffering; supporting individuals to find, harmony, peace and balance through the diagnosis and treatment of human response; and advocacy in the care of individuals and their communities locally and globally.


Holistic nurses find opportunities to assist clients in opening new perspectives and new ways of seeing comprehensive health promotion and dis-ease and illness risk reduction, proactive interventions addressing patterns, antecedents, and mediators of health conditions, and opportunities in an individual’s unique health experience for growth, transformation, and finding meaning and purpose.


The holistic nurse is a vessel of healing and facilitates the healing process with therapeutic interactions with others.  Complementary and alternative/integrative modalities (CAM) are introduced in the practice of a holistic nurse to assist people with their physiological, psychological, and spiritual needs. Utilizing these modalities do not refute the use of conventional medicine but simply serves to complement and enhance optimal healing potential.

There are 5 core values that a holistic nurse stands by for integrating the art and science of nursing. These values include (1) Holistic Philosophy, Theories, and Ethics, (2) Holistic Caring Process, (3) Holistic Communication, Therapeutic Healing Environment, and Cultural Diversity, (4) Holistic Education and Research, and (5) Holistic Nurse Self-Reflection and Self-Care Settings for Holistic Nursing Practice. As a main core value of Holistic Nursing, self care, self-reflection, self-responsibility, and self-awareness, and spirituality  is integrated and required for the holistic nurse personal life to serve as role models to others. This creates a deeper awareness and connectedness with oneself, others, external environment in nature, and God/Life Force/Absolute/Transcendence facilitating the healing process. For more information on the Holistic Nursing Scope of Practice, who holistic nurses are, what we do for individuals and our communities, and how to join as member of the American Holistic Nurses Association please click the link here.



The American Holistic Nurses Certification Corporation (AHNCC) defines certification as a qualifying process that a nongovernmental authority uses to grant recognition to a person who has met specified qualifications and competencies in a defined area of practice. A registered nurse validates qualifications, demonstrates competencies encompassing holism, and specialized clinical knowledge for professional practice through seeking national credentialing conferred by authority such as AHNCC. To hear what Nurse Theorist, Helen Erickson, has to say about the Holistic Nurse certification please click the video below: 

Get Certified-Helen Erickson, Nursing Theorist and AHNA Member

The purpose of national certification are to establish knowledge and holistic nurse competencies for practice to assure the public that the certified holistic nurse has completed all eligibility requirements and received the level of knowledge to earn credentials. The Holistic Baccalaureate Nurse, Board Certified (HNB-BC), requires a baccalaureate degree in nursing from an institute regionally accredited by the Association of Schools and Colleges (ASC). For more information on eligibility criteria and process to become a board certified holistic nurse and the recertification process please click the link here.


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