Online Program

Public health nurses' self-reported practice competency

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 : 4:30 p.m. - 4:50 p.m.

Rosemary V. Chaudry, RN, PhD, MPH, Assessment, Planning, & Education, Delaware General Health District, Delaware, OH
Barbara Polivka, PhD, School of Nursing, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY
D. J. Sam Chapman, MPH, RN, Ohio Department of Health, Columbus, OH
Background: Issues related to the public health nursing workforce have been identified as a national research priority. The purpose of this descriptive study used a self-report online survey to describe self-reported competency levels of public health (PH) nurses currently employed in local health departments in Ohio. Method: The Tailored Design Method guided data collection. Surveys explored competencies in areas related to the 10 Essential Services of PH (ES) and the 17 interventions in the PH Interventions Model (PHIM). Data were analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics. Results: Data were analyzed from the 259 PHNs meeting inclusion criteria. Highest levels of self-reported competency were found for ES 1 Monitoring Community Health Status and ES 4 Mobilizing Community Partnerships, and for Health Teaching, Counseling, and Consultation under the PHIM model. Lowest competency levels were in the areas of ES 6 Enforcement of Laws/Regulations; ES 3 Informing, Educating, Empowering the Community; and the PHIM interventions Social Marketing, Advocacy, and Policy development/Enforcement. Significant differences were found in competency by PHN position, education, years of nursing experience, and health department type. Conclusions: Findings have implications for the workforce development, basic nursing education, and for national public health department accreditation standards related to workforce development under Domain 8 as well as under the domains that relate to the specific competency areas. Enhancing PH practice competency can strengthen the credibility and relevance of the practice of PHN to public health and enhance the effectiveness of local health departments.

Learning Areas:

Administration, management, leadership
Public health or related nursing
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Identify two areas of low self-reported PHN practice competency. Identify two areas of high self-reported PHN practice competency. Discuss the relevance of PHN competence to national accreditation of public health departments.

Keyword(s): Public Health Nursing, Workforce

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I received funding and was principal investigator for the study. I have been principal investigator or co-investigator of several research projects focusing on public health nursing workforce issues.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.