Nurses' experience of the transition from student to professional practitioner in a public hospital in Lesotho
Makhakhe, Malethola Anna
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The aim of this study was to develop guidelines for the support of newly qualified nurses to ease their transition from student to professional practitioners in Lesotho; based on an exploration and description of the newly qualified nurses’ first hand experience of their transition from student to professional practitioners in a public hospital in Lesotho. The rationale behind the study was the researcher’s perception of an attitude change observed in the newly qualified professional practitioners. An explorative, descriptive, contextual, qualitative research design was chosen. The sample included all newly qualified professional nurses who worked in a public hospital in Lesotho for a period of one year or less. Data collection took place by means of semi–structured individual interviews with ten (10) participants and a focus group interview with eight (8) of the original participants. Content analysis of the data in the qualitative tradition was independently done by two coders who identified four (4) themes and ten (10) sub–themes. The first theme was described as reality shock, including the sub–themes emotional reactions and limited resources. The second theme, competence, includes the sub–themes of knowledge, skills and attitude. A third theme describes the participants experience of the support from management, colleagues, the Ministry of Health and Social welfare, nursing educational institutions and the community. The fourth theme describes the participants’ vision for the future. Each of the themes was discussed together with relevant data obtained from literature and reduced to a conclusive statement which served as basis for the formulation of guidelines to ease the transition from student to professional practitioner in Lesotho. The research report concluded with the researcher’s evaluation of the study and recommendations for nursing education, nursing management and further research.
- Health Sciences