Determinants in the development of advanced nursing practice: a case study of primary-care settings in Hong Kong


Sheila TwinnThe Nethersole School of NursingThe Chinese University of Hong KongEsther Lee BuildingShatinHong KongChina E-mail:


Different factors have been shown to influence the development of models of advanced nursing practice (ANP) in primary-care settings. Although ANP is being developed in hospitals in Hong Kong, China, it remains undeveloped in primary care and little is known about the factors determining the development of such a model. The aims of the present study were to investigate the contribution of different models of nursing practice to the care provided in primary-care settings in Hong Kong, and to examine the determinants influencing the development of a model of ANP in such settings. A multiple case study design was selected using both qualitative and quantitative methods of data collection. Sampling methods reflected the population groups and stage of the case study. Sampling included a total population of 41 nurses from whom a secondary volunteer sample was drawn for face-to-face interviews. In each case study, a convenience sample of 70 patients were recruited, from whom 10 were selected purposively for a semi-structured telephone interview. An opportunistic sample of healthcare professionals was also selected. The within-case and cross-case analysis demonstrated four major determinants influencing the development of ANP: (1) current models of nursing practice; (2) the use of skills mix; (3) the perceived contribution of ANP to patient care; and (4) patients’ expectations of care. The level of autonomy of individual nurses was considered particularly important. These determinants were used to develop a model of ANP for a primary-care setting. In conclusion, although the findings highlight the complexity determining the development and implementation of ANP in primary care, the proposed model suggests that definitions of advanced practice are appropriate to a range of practice models and cultural settings. However, the findings highlight the importance of assessing the effectiveness of such models in terms of cost and long-term patient outcomes.