Rural home care nurses require access to continuing nursing education to address the increasing complexity of client care needs in their communities. There is currently limited literature on continuing nursing education for rural home care nurses. The purpose of this study was to explore the continuing nursing education experiences of rural home care nurses using interpretive description. Purposive and snowball sampling were used to recruit registered nurses who worked in publicly funded rural home care in one western Canadian province, in communities with a population of less than 10,000 people. Twenty rural home care nurses participated in semi-structured telephone interviews. Data was collected between December 2020 to May 2021 and the analysis was supported using NVivo 12 software. Key findings from this study contribute to the description of western Canadian rural home care nursing roles and the degree of autonomy required to provide expert care in the home environment. Rural home care nurses’ experiences with continuing education are impacted by external factors including: (1) Chameleonic Practice (One-Person Show, Professional Intersection, Becoming their Person), (2) Foundational Instability (Roadblocks to Learning, Stretched Thin, Rural Repatriation), and (3) Learning Leadership (Filling the Learning Bucket, Finding a Way, Learning Reciprocity). The findings of this study suggest that the continuing nursing education experiences of rural home care nurses is dependent on many factors. Significant policy changes and updated standards of practice are required to support safe client care through the delivery of evidence informed continuing nursing education.
Michelle Pavloff, Saskatchewan Polytechnic, Canada
Mary Ellen Labrecque, University of Saskatchewan, Canada