Boundary matters: Clinical leadership and the distinctive disciplinary contribution of nursing to multidisciplinary care

McNamara, Martin S., Fealy, Gerard M., Casey, Mary, Geraghty, Ruth, Johnson, Maree, Halligan, Phil, Treacy, Pearl and Butler, Michelle (2011) Boundary matters: Clinical leadership and the distinctive disciplinary contribution of nursing to multidisciplinary care. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 20 23-24: 3502-3512. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2702.2011.03719.x

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Author McNamara, Martin S.
Fealy, Gerard M.
Casey, Mary
Geraghty, Ruth
Johnson, Maree
Halligan, Phil
Treacy, Pearl
Butler, Michelle
Title Boundary matters: Clinical leadership and the distinctive disciplinary contribution of nursing to multidisciplinary care
Journal name Journal of Clinical Nursing   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0962-1067
Publication date 2011-12
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1365-2702.2011.03719.x
Open Access Status
Volume 20
Issue 23-24
Start page 3502
End page 3512
Total pages 11
Place of publication Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Aims. To describe Irish nurses’ views of clinical leadership and to describe their clinical leadership development needs.

Nurses are often unclear about the precise nature of clinical leadership and its impact on the processes and
outcomes of care and little is known about their self-perceived clinical leadership development needs.

Seventeen focus group interviews were conducted with a purposive sample of 144 nurses from 13 practice settings. A
conceptual lens was provided by the work of Bernstein and Young who emphasise the epistemological, practical and relational
significance of boundaries and how they relate in fundamental ways to professionals’ sense of their distinctive disciplinary
identities and membership of specialised communities of practice.

Focus group data were collected using semi-structured topic guides. Analysis was facilitated by NVivo 7© and
interpretation was informed by a conceptual framework arising from the interplay of emerging themes and the literature review.

The implications for clinical leadership development of two critical concepts, ‘representing nursing’ and ‘compensatory
action’, are discussed in detail.

Clinical leadership development should emphasise the development of all nurses as clinical leaders in the context
of the delineation, clarification and articulation of their distinctive contribution in multidisciplinary care settings.
Relevance to clinical practice. Clinical leaders are recognised as practice experts and as leaders in their particular fields.
Recognition and influence in and beyond the immediate context of care depends greatly on their ability to articulate the distinct
nursing contribution to patient care. This ability provides an essential resource to resist the ongoing blurring, effacement and
dilution of nurses’ roles.
Keyword Bernstein
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 6 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 10 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Wed, 10 Aug 2011, 10:34:28 EST by Vicki Percival on behalf of School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work