Australian practice nurses’ perceptions of their role and competency to provide nutrition care to patients living with chronic disease

Cass, Sarah, Ball, Lauren and Leveritt, Michael (2013) Australian practice nurses’ perceptions of their role and competency to provide nutrition care to patients living with chronic disease. Australian Journal of Primary Health, 20 2: 203-208. doi:10.1071/PY12118


Author Cass, Sarah
Ball, Lauren
Leveritt, Michael
Title Australian practice nurses’ perceptions of their role and competency to provide nutrition care to patients living with chronic disease
Journal name Australian Journal of Primary Health   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1448-7527
1836-7399
Publication date 2013-01-01
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1071/PY12118
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 20
Issue 2
Start page 203
End page 208
Total pages 6
Place of publication Collingwood, VIC Australia
Publisher C S I R O Publishing
Language eng
Abstract Nutrition is important in the management of chronic disease, and practice nurses in the Australian primary care setting are increasingly providing nutrition care to patients living with chronic disease. The aim of the present study was to investigate practice nurses' perceptions of their role and competency to provide nutrition care to patients living with chronic disease in Australia. Twenty practice nurses currently employed in general practice participated in an individual semi-structured telephone interview. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and thematically analysed. Practice nurses perceived themselves to be in a prime position to provide opportunistic nutrition care to patients. Participants perceived that the ideal role of a practice nurse is to advocate for nutrition and provide a basic level of nutrition care to patients; however, the interpretation of the term basic' varied between participants. Participants perceived that practice nurses are highly trusted and approachable, which they valued as important characteristics for the provision of nutrition care. Barriers to providing nutrition care included time constraints, lack of nutrition knowledge and lack of confidence. Participants were concerned about the availability and accessibility of nutrition education opportunities for practice nurses. The present study has demonstrated that practice nurses perceive themselves as having a significant role in the provision of nutrition care to patients with chronic disease in the Australian primary care setting. Further investigation of strategies to enhance the effectiveness of nutrition care provision by practice nurses is warranted.
Formatted abstract
Nutrition is important in the management of chronic disease, and practice nurses in the Australian primary care
setting are increasingly providing nutrition care to patients living with chronic disease. The aim of the present study was to
investigate practice nurses’ perceptions of their role and competency to provide nutrition care to patients living with chronic
disease in Australia. Twenty practice nurses currently employed in general practice participated in an individual semistructured telephone interview. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and thematically analysed. Practice nurses perceived themselves to be in a prime position to provide opportunistic nutrition care to patients. Participants perceived that the ideal role of a practice nurse is to advocate for nutrition and provide a basic level of nutrition care to patients; however, the interpretation of the term ‘basic’ varied between participants. Participants perceived that practice nurses are highly trusted and approachable, which they valued as important characteristics for the provision of nutrition care. Barriers to providing nutrition care included time constraints, lack of nutrition knowledge and lack of confidence. Participants were concerned about the availability and accessibility of nutrition education opportunities for practice nurses. The present study has demonstrated that practice nurses perceive themselves as having a significant role in the provision of nutrition care to patients with chronic disease in the Australian primary care setting. Further investigation of strategies to enhance the effectiveness of nutrition care provision by practice nurses is warranted.
Keyword Nutrition
Chronic Disease
Australian primary health care
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences Publications
 
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 13 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Tue, 02 Apr 2013, 23:13:03 EST by Michael Leveritt on behalf of School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences