Nurse scientist (NS) roles in clinical practice settings are key components of The Future of Nursing and ANCC Magnet® recognition. Despite increased opportunities for NS roles, leveraging these roles to advance nursing science remains at an early stage. We describe opportunities and challenges for NSs in clinical practice settings, highlighting the value of a strong partnership with chief nurse officers as critical for the success of NSs and outcomes associated with these roles.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
As the panelists reflected on the leadership support necessary for nurses to participate in research, such as statistical support, software purchases, and study design or analysis consultation, only one of the panelists had access to these resources. Among the activities deemed “critical to success” of any given research endeavor, internal funding or small grant support was identified as necessary to sustain a robust program. Panelists echoed the need for innovation in financial support strategies but indicated that the time for marketing and for soliciting and writing grants for such funding was a challenge given the time constraints and inexperience of clinical partners with grant writing. Of note, the panelists concurred that foundational infrastructure must be in place for IRB, library services, analysis support, and publication submission to most efficiently meet the expectations of the role, regardless of size and scope of the projects. Another expense, and a factor determined to be “critical to success” from the programmatic perspective, was protected time for nurses to attend research council meetings, participate in professional presentations, and obtain additional formal and informal education in support of health system science. All told, the recommendations of Finnell and Castner were supported by our panel of NSs. Many of the details learned from these panelists regarding the programmatic infrastructure deemed necessary for successful health system science may serve to advance not only the science but also the cost-benefit analysis needed to leverage the value of that science.
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