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Recent Trends and Scope of Nursing

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Advance nursing practice is a term used to describe an advanced level of clinical nursing practice that makes the maximum use of graduate education preparation in nursing knowledge and expertise in meeting the health needs of the individual, family, group and communities. Nursing practice is an art of providing care to clients, the and the nurse plans a nursing care based on the patient’s initial condition. This is based on specific nursing theory.

Trends in Nursing

Trends are the changes seen in heath care. Trends are attracting phenomena, but they do not exist in vacuums. Trends are related to one another, and sometimes they have temporary and sometimes permanent changes. Trends are condition in which things are developing or changing. The currents trends in Nursing are

Reduction in distance

– Distance of clients and health care providers have reduced by the use of new technologies, likes mobile, videos, conference and communication technique.

Computerization of patient care

In future the nurses would design software for patient care using new technologies.

Quality assurance

Public knows their rights. Human Rights Commission Consumer Protection Acts and Press are constant pressures on the professionals to deliver their best. Nurses have to give quality care to their clients and they cannot ignore their duties assigned to them when handling lives.

Decentralized approach to care management

Nurses are responsible for the clients assigned to them and the care delivered by them should be effective to patients and it should lead to a smooth functioning of the unit.

In services and Continuing Nursing education

With many new changes and discoveries in health care system, nurses should always keep an up to date knowledge on the new changes. Different types of nursing education like Seminars, Conferences, Training programmes, Library resources, Researches, Workshops etc are there where nurses can attend and update knowledge. Even after attaining a basic education in Nursing, nurses can go for higher education like Bachelors Degree, Masters, PHD etc. Characteristics of Nursing Practice

1) Provision of effective and efficient nursing care.

2) Exhibit leadership and take initiative to improve client health, and outcomes.

3) Integrated use in the depth of nursing knowledge, research and clinical expertise.

4) Ability to apply and explain the theoretical, ethical and experimental foundation of nursing practice. 5) Demonstration of judgemental decision making.

Broadening Focus

The focus of nursing has broadened from the care of ill person to family and sometimes to community. In the past nursing like medicine was oriented towards disease and illness, but today there is an increase in the recognition of peoples needs towards health. Another aspect is nursing practice have moved to the community also. During the past nurses worked only in institutions, but now its provided in homes and clinics. The nursing activity not only helps the ill people, but also helps the healthy people to maintain their health.

Scientific Basis

In the past nursing was based on intuition or experience rather than research, through trial and error the nurses discovered measures that would assist the client and thus nurses became skilled through experience.


Technology is now applied in health field widely. Now–a–days nurses are in the midst of these changing technologies in hospitals and client homes. Nurses need more education to attain knowledge and skills needed to use the new technology. The new technology helps nurses to gather client’s assessments data through non invasive techniques.

Changing trends in Nursing

Nursing was originated from the word ‘nurturing’ which means nourishing, helping in growth and development of human being in the past. Modern nursing began in 19th century by Florence Nightingale. The aim was only to promote the recovery of patients. But now the nurse provides care to the client, family and community, and therefore nursing practice is dedicated to maintain and promote the health preventing illness care and rehabilitation of sick and disabled.

Nursing Process

The nurse plans the care of the patient through the nursing process.

There are 5 steps in nursing process:






Scope of Nursing PracticeThe scope of nursing practice is defined as the ranges of roles, functions, responsibilities and activities which a registered nurse is educated and authorised to perform. Nursing practice is directed towards the goal of assisting clients to obtain and maintain optimal health in order to maximize the quality of life. The scope of a nurse is influenced by the nurse’s knowledge, practice area, requirements of employer and the needs of client.

Principles of Scope of Practice

1) The primary motivation for expansion must be the interest of client and the promotion and maintenance for the best quality service.

2) Expansion of practice should be based on nursing definition and the values of nursing practice.

3) Expansion of practice must be made only with consideration to legislation National policy, local policy and guidelines.

4) The nurse/midwife must be competent to carry out the role.

5) The nurse/ midwife must take initiative to develop her competency, communication and evaluations.

6) Expansion of care must be based on Nursing Process.

7) The individual nurse is responsible for his /her practice, which means she /he is liable for the decision making and to determine whether to expand her scope of practice or not.

Factors influencing the scope of practice

1) Standards of practice.

2) State Law/Regulation.

3) Institutional Policies and Procedures.

4) Self determination.

5) Professional liability and risk management concerns.


Nursing theories are based on Evidence based knowledge related to its area of practice. Nursing is also associated to other health professional through its participating, referring and synchronizing activities and thus has a particular and shared body of practice and knowledge. Nursing requires apt education and training as well as experience with the scope of practice. The practice, knowledge and competence of a nurse are influenced by education, experience and expertise.

Nursing practice in different setting

  • Mobile nursing services
  • Occupational health services
  • Military nursing services
  • School health services
  • Nursing Robots
  • Space nursing
  • Tele nursing

Areas of Nursing Practice

It involves 4 areas

  • Promoting health
  • Preventing illness
  • Restoring health
  • Caring for the dying.

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