“I'm not sure I'm a nurse”: A hermeneutic phenomenological study of nursing home nurses' work identity

Thompson, Juliana, Cook, Glenda and Duschinsky, Robert (2018) “I'm not sure I'm a nurse”: A hermeneutic phenomenological study of nursing home nurses' work identity. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 27 (5-6). pp. 1049-1062. ISSN 1365-2702

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/jocn.14111


Aims: To explore nursing home nurses’ experiences and views of work identity.

Background: Nursing home nurses are in a unique position as they work at the interface of health and social care. Little is known about nursing home nurses’ perceptions and experiences of working within this context. Evidence suggests that using the concept of work identity can support understanding of how workers make sense of their work.

Design: Hermeneutic phenomenological study.
Methods: The study was carried out in 7 nursing homes in North East England. Findings are based upon literary analysis of multiple episodic interviews with 13 nursing home nurses.

Results: Participants’ responses suggested that nursing ‘residents’ is different to nursing ‘patients’, and nursing home nurses are required to modify their care activities to account for these differences. Participants also proposed that they are isolated and excluded from the rest of the healthcare workforce group. These issues led participants to feel uncertain about work identity. Many participants attempted to strengthen their work identity by aligning their role with what they perceived the ‘nurse identity’ to be.

Conclusion: Nurses’ work activities and professional group identity influence their work identity. When work activities and professional group identity do not align with role expectations, as can be the case for nursing home nurses, work identity may be compromised. These nurses may attempt to change work practices to strengthen their work identity.

Relevance to clinical practice: Health and social care providers need to account for work identity factors in the organisation of care, and planning and implementation of integrated health and social care initiatives.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: nursing home nurse, care of older people, integrated health and social care, work identity, work role, profession, hermeneutic phenomenology
Subjects: B700 Nursing
L900 Others in Social studies
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Nursing, Midwifery and Health
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 06 Oct 2017 08:05
Last Modified: 31 Jul 2021 13:31
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/32267

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