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Health care managers’ perspectives on new nursing and midwifery roles: perceived impact on patient care and cost effectiveness

Authors

  • HUGH McKENNA CBE, FRCN, RGN, RMN, DipN(Lond), BSc(Hons), Adv Dip Ed RNT, DPhil, FRCSI,

    1. Dean of the Faculty of Life and Health Sciences, University of Ulster, Coleraine, Co. Londonderry
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  • SINEAD KEENEY BA (Hons), MRes, PhD,

    1. Senior Lecturer, Institute of Nursing Research, School of Nursing, University of Ulster, Institute of Nursing Research, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, UK
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  • FELICITY HASSON BA (Hons), MSc, Pg Dip

    1. Senior Lecturer, Institute of Nursing Research, School of Nursing, University of Ulster, Institute of Nursing Research, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, UK
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Hugh McKenna
Faculty of Life and Health Sciences
University of Ulster
Cromore Road
Coleraine
Co. Londonderry BT52 1SA
UK
E-mail: hp.mckenna@ulster.ac.uk

Abstract

Aims  The aim of this study was to explore new nursing and midwifery roles and associated levels of practice from the health care providers’ perspective. This paper will present findings relating to the perceived cost effectiveness of these roles and their impact on patient care.

Background  Profound changes in the way the health care systems are organized, managed and financed have resulted in the proliferation of new nursing and midwifery roles. However, the evidence base for these workforce developments is limited, especially with regard to health care providers’ perspectives on cost effectiveness and patient outcomes.

Method  Qualitative interviews were carried out with all Directors of Nursing in the 18 Health and Social Services (HSS) Trusts and the Chief Nurses and Directors of Primary Care in the four HSS Boards in Northern Ireland.

Results  Key findings were as follows: there was widespread support for the development of these roles, they are perceived to have a positive impact on patient care; however, the need for support was recognized to ensure the continuation of such roles. Securing funding was problematic and this was influential on the kind of new roles that were developed.

Implications for Nursing Management  Issues relating to effective implementation and the need for further research into the efficacy and effectives of such initiatives is required.

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