Background: This paper describes a Nursing Development Programme in Tajikistan where four organizations worked together to develop some innovative changes in nursing practice and education. Within the context of Health Care Reform the Government of Tajikistan provided a climate for Nursing Development. The joint efforts of the Ministry of Health, the World Health Organization (WHO), the WHO Collaborating Centre for Nursing and Midwifery at Glasgow Caledonian University, Scotland, and the Aga Khan Health Service in Tajikistan, have led to major changes in education and practice.
Methods: The project focused on the development of new standards for practice in Gorno Badakhshan and a new Family Health Nurse curriculum for all students entering nursing programmes. A Nursing Centre was opened to provide leadership in education and practice and a co-ordinating Council was established to develop professional standards.
Results: The project has demonstrated that nurses in Tajikistan have embraced the developments in both education and practice with the aim of improving the care they give to their communities and the support they provide for the teams within which they work.
Conclusions: The project also illustrates how different organizations can work effectively together. Key principles identified from this project for effective collaborative working include: communication, common goals, shared expertise, pooled funding and close alignment with Government strategies for Health Reform.