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Barbara L. Brush, Eileen M. McGee, Bonnie Cavanagh, Mary Woodward

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This article provides an operational definition of forgiveness as a first step in the systematic analysis of the concept. Using the method described by Walker and Avant (1995), the authors identify the attributes and characteristics of forgiveness and its theoretical and practical implications for nursing. Sample cases from clinical practice help illustrate the concept further. Further nursing research needs to test the theoretical relationships between forgiveness and nursing practice outcomes.