Nurses' and nurse assistants' beliefs, attitudes and actions related to role and function in an inpatient stroke rehabilitation unit-A qualitative study

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AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: To explore nurses' and nurse assistants' beliefs, attitudes and actions related to their function in an inpatient stroke rehabilitation unit.

BACKGROUND: Several attempts have been made to describe nurses' roles and functions in inpatient neurorehabilitation. However, current understandings of the contributions that nurses and nurse assistants make to neurorehabilitation remain sparse.

DESIGN: Descriptive, interpretive qualitative study.

METHODS: Participant observations were conducted during 1 month in a stroke rehabilitation unit at a university hospital in the Capital Region of Denmark. The observations were audiorecorded and field notes were taken on the spot. Semistructured interviews with nurses (N = 8) and nurse assistants (N = 6) were performed. The audiorecorded observations, field notes and interviews were transcribed for inductive and deductive content analysis.

RESULTS: Three main categories with underlying subcategories were identified: (i) the importance of professionalism, (ii) striving for visibility, (iii) the importance of structure.

CONCLUSION: This study contributes to present understandings of nurses' and nurse assistants' roles and functions in inpatient stroke rehabilitation. We obtained insights into nursing staff's beliefs and attitudes about rehabilitation-as well as their own role and function-and furthermore how the latter affects their actions in daily practice.

RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE: The nursing role and function are still not clearly defined. Further education is needed to strengthen the contribution of nursing staff to patients' rehabilitation. Furthermore, focus on developing a professional language and a framework that supports continuity within daily care and rehabilitation is needed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Clinical Nursing
Issue number23-24
Pages (from-to)4905-4914
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017

    Research areas

  • Journal Article

ID: 186421225