Dorothea Elizabeth Orem was born in 1914 in Baltimore, Maryland. Dorothea Orem died on June 22, 2007. Her father was a construction worker and her mother was a home maker. She had a sister and was the youngest.
Dorothea Orem went to Providence High School of Nursing in Washington D.C. where she received her diploma of nursing in the 1930’s. Dorothea later completed her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at the Catholic University of America in 1939, and in 1946 she received her Master of Science degree in Nursing Education from the same university. Dorothea Orem is well known in America for nursing theory. But at the beginning of her nursing career she worked as an operating room nurse, private duty nurse as well as doing hospital staff nursing on pediatric and adult medical surgical units, evening supervisor in the emergency room, and biological science teaching. Orem held directorship of both the nursing school and the department of nursing at Providence Hospital in Detroit, from 1940-1949. After leaving Detroit she lived in Indiana and worked in the Division of Hospital and Institutional Services of the Indiana State Board of Health her objective was to improve the quality of nursing in general hospitals and she was able to develop the definition of nursing by this time. Dorothea had a goal to upgrade the quality of nursing in general hospitals throughout the state. It was during this time that Orem developed her definition of nursing practice. In 1957, Orem moved to Washington D.C. to take a position at the Office of Education, U.S. Department of Health Education and Welfare as a curriculum consultant. Orem worked on project to upgrade practical nurse training that stimulated a need to address the question. What is the subject matter of nursing? This led to
Nursing profession and practice that wouldn't be the same now, as it was yesterday, if not for the contribution of theorist such as Dorothea Orem who’s initiative and deep concern to the profession richly contributed to the development of its standard of practice, and that a nurse is equally regarded and recognized together with other medical profession with its own unique functions and contributions to patient recovery. In return the society itself is benefiting from it. Dorothea Orem's great contribution in conceptualizing a model or framework of nursing, is when she headed a nursing committee in creating a model that will guide research in nursing as it is now. From there it gave birth to the theories which is widely use now in standard of practice and as well as in educating individual who's aspiring to