ECU Author/Contributor (non-ECU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Cheryl Duke (Creator)
East Carolina University (ECU )
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Abstract: The purpose of this hermeneutic phenomenology (van Manen, 1990) was to gain insight into the meaning and lived experience of nurse practitioners (NP) with at least one year of work experience regarding their initial transition from new graduate to hospital-based practitioner. This study provided information regarding NP hospital-based transition experience that had not been revealed in the nursing literature. The meaning of transitioning into hospital-based practice was discovered through analysis of nurse practitioner letters and interviews in this phenomenological study. Six themes emerged from this research including: Going from expert RN to novice NP; system integration; "Don't Give Up"; Learning "On the Fly"; They Don't Understand my NP Role; and Succeeding Through Collaboration.   Master's prepared, board-certified NPs in North Carolina (NC) with between one and three years of NP practice experience in a hospital setting comprised the population of interest for this study. Twelve participants were purposefully sampled from nine hospitals in NC. Individual, voice-recorded, in-depth, open-ended telephone interviews were conducted with each participant.   The majority of the participants indicated a timeframe that ranged from six to 18 months regarding how long it took them to feel more comfortable in their NP role, the lack of comfort was most intense during the first nine months of practice. Participants confronted multiple obstacles and challenges as new NPs. These challenges included navigating and negotiating a new health care provider role; becoming integrated into a hospital system in what was a new role for them and sometimes for the system; learning how to function effectively as a NP while simultaneously working to re-establish themselves as proficient clinicians with a newly expanded practice scope; building key relationships; and educating physicians, hospital leaders, clinical staff, patients, and families about the NP role.   This new knowledge demonstrates that although the transition to hospital-based practice for the new NP graduate is individually unique, there are important dimensions of the experience which are universal and should be considered by new NPs, employing hospitals and staff, physicians, and educators. This information can be used to help ensure an ideal transition occurs for the new hospital-based NP.  

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Date: 2010
Health Sciences, Nursing

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