Nurse Practitioners’ perspectives on the added value of nurse practitioners in the outpatient clinic the Netherlands: a generic explorative qualitative study.
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Background: Many Dutch NPs work in outpatient clinics, together with physicians and specialised nurses (SNs). There is discussion about the added value of NPs among SNs and physicians. They believe that both professions do not differ in patientcare and that they perform similar tasks. For NP positioning and educational purposes, it is crucial to gain insight in the added value of the NPs in relation to the SNs. Research question: What are the perspectives of nurse practitioners on the added value of the nurse practitioner in relation to the specialised nurse practicing in the outpatient clinic, based on the CanMEDS competences? Methods: Explorative generic qualitative research was performed from March to June 2017. Data was collected through twelve semi-structured interviews with purposefully sampled NPs. Thematic analysis was used for data-analysis. Thereafter, the CanMEDS competences were used to compare the NPs and SNs practice. Findings: Three main themes were derived from the data: 1) Nursing leadership was the most distinctive competence regarding the added value of the NP in the outpatient clinic. 2) Integration of care and cure, and performing on the expert level of nursing expertise was most mentioned added value, and 3) NPs competence in Knowledge and Science. Conclusion: Driven by the NPs’ competency in nursing leadership, the added value of NPs in relation to SNs is evident in integrating care and cure, practicing as nursing expert and knowledge in science. NPs and SNs must discuss the added value of both professions and how they can strengthen each other’s practice. Moreover, NPs must propagate their added value and work together with physicians to make use of the NPs added value.