Context and implementation of advanced nursing practice in two countries: An exploratory qualitative comparative study
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BACKGROUND: The complexity and difficulties involved in the development and implementation of health innovations, such as advanced practice nursing roles, result in slow and sporadic international acceptance. To manage this complexity, it is advisable to deepen understanding of the context in which these innovation processes take place. However, there is little research specifically concerned with contextual factors that influence the implementation of advanced practice nursing roles. PURPOSE: To integrate results and develop a comprehensive understanding of the contextual factors that influence the development and implementation of advanced practice nursing in two countries, Canada and Spain. METHODS: The research method used was qualitative, descriptive, and explanatory. Different qualitative methods, a novel data-collection process, and perspectives from participants in various professional groups were used to triangulate the findings from both settings. Participants with diverse perspectives on practice, organization, and health and regulatory environments were engaged to participate in semistructured focus groups in Catalonia and individual interviews in Quebec. Data gathered were to provide information on a variety of context dimensions: understanding of advanced practice nursing; perceived needs to develop the role; and perceived barriers and facilitators present in the Catalan and Quebec contexts. Thematic analysis was carried out based on the theoretical proposals from the framework and triangulated for both sides. FINDINGS: Thirty interviews were conducted in Quebec and 44 in Catalonia. Integration of findings reflected a vast predominance of convergent themes despite differences in context and population characteristics. The study identified common and divergent contextual factors in advanced practice development and implementation in these settings. The same perceived barriers and facilitators were prominent almost evenly across all groups, although organizational and environmental themes were the most coded and discussed during interviews. DISCUSSION: Understanding contextual factors will ultimately allow better understanding of complex phenomena in health care. Further reporting of contextual factors that influence the development and implementation of advanced practice nursing roles in other countries is required to compare innovative processes.
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