The social world of Australian practice nurses and the influence of medical dominance: An analysis of the literature


  • Jane Mills RN, PhD, MN, MEd, Grad Cert Ed (Tert Teach), FRCNA,

    Corresponding author
    1. Senior Research Fellow, Monash University, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Gippsland Campus, Churchill, Victoria, Australia
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      Jane Mills is currently: Senior Lecturer, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Nutrition, James Cook University, Cairns Campus, Queensland, Australia.

  • Christine Hallinan RN DApp.Sc. Cert.Crit.Care

    1. Lecturer, School of Nursing, University of Ballarat, Horsham, Victoria, Australia
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  • Authorship Credit: (i) JM (80%) CH (20%): conception and design, or analysis and interpretation of data; (ii) JM (80%) CH (20%): drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; and (iii) JM (50%) CH (50%): final approval of the version to be published.

Jane Mills, PO Box 6811, Cairns 4870, Australia. Email:


In Australia, the number of practice nurses is growing at a rapid rate. On the nursing landscape, this group of nurses stand out because of their relationship with the Australian Government who both fund them, and concern themselves with their continuing professional development. This paper provides a construction of the social world of Australian practice nurses, identifying stakeholders in the business of practice nursing. Literature produced by the various social world segments is analysed for the influence of medical dominance on the role, image, power and politics of practice nurses.