District and practice nurses' public health practice and training needs

Newby, Katie; Wallace, Louise and Wareing, Hilary (2005). District and practice nurses' public health practice and training needs. British Journal of Community Nursing, 10(5) 214, 216-8-220 passim.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.12968/bjcn.2005.10.5.18049


In 2000, the UK government set out its plan to tackle poor health in 'Saving Lives: Our Healthier Nation'. Practice and district nurses were recognized as key health professionals in achieving the integration of health improvement into the local delivery of health care. In order to respond to these changes, North Tyneside PCT undertook a training needs and skills analysis of local practice and district nurses. Thirty practice nurses and 39 district nurses returned completed questionnaires. Practice and district nurses rated their competence as lower in public health skills than in clinical skills and also rated them of less importance. Senior practice and district nurses indicated that they perceived low value in skills required to move forward public health practice within community nursing. The findings of this study have been used to develop a 5-day training programme. The approach has relevance to those concerned with making public health a reality within community services.

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