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Professional practice models for nurses in low-income countries: an integrative review

Ng'ang'a, Njoki; Byrne, Mary W.

Background: Attention is turning to nurses, who form the greatest proportion of health personnel worldwide, to play a greater role in delivering health services amidst a severe human resources for health crisis and overwhelming disease burden in low-income countries. Nurse leaders in low-income countries must consider essential context for nurses to fulfill their professional obligation to deliver safe and reliable health services. Professional practice models (PPMs) have been proposed as a framework for strategically positioning nurses to impact health outcomes. PPMs comprise 5 elements: professional values, patient care delivery systems, professional relationships, management approach and remuneration. In this paper, we synthesize the existing literature on PPMs for nurses in low-income countries. Methods: An integrative review of CINAHL-EBSCO, PubMed and Scopus databases for English language journal articles published after 1990. Search terms included nurses, professionalism, professional practice models, low-income countries, developing countries and relevant Medical Subject Heading Terms (MeSH). Results: Sixty nine articles published between 1993 and 2014 were included in the review. Twenty seven articles examined patient care delivery models, 17 professional relationships, 12 professional values, 11 remuneration and 1 management approach. One article looked at comprehensive PPMs. Conclusions: Adopting comprehensive PPMs or their components can be a strategy to exploit the capacity of nurses and provide a framework for determining the full expression of the nursing role.

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Nursing
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October 16, 2015