Elite Research Scholarships

Developing nursing practice in the Southern Health Region to improve care provision to persons with chronic disease

Developing nursing practice in the Southern Health Region to improve care provision to persons with chronic disease

Changes in the structure and governance of health care service in Tasmania have been reflected in recent changes which now situate all Southern nursing services under the auspices of a central executive director via a structured reporting framework.  While it is envisaged that management structures will now move toward improved collaboration between sectors and sharing of resources, little is known of how changes will be effected at ‘the coal face’. Research to date would indicate that health service provision in reality often occurs in a vacuum, with little or no communication between sectors. In contrast to the needs of clients, services are often fractured and difficult to navigate. The study to be undertaken will investigate existing structures of care delivery and communication between sectors in the Southern Health Region which relate specifically to persons with chronic disease, using the exemplar of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

The work will build on work previously undertaken within acute care using an action research methodology to support the care provided to people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Research within the Tasmanian context has also included engaging community providers in adoption and facilitation of self management approaches in the COPD client group. An action research methodology will be used to initially scope the current situation (reconnaissance) of communication and information sharing between patients, sectors and health care providers. The research will continue in iterative cycles of action and reflection, undertaken by a group of community health care providers, with the central aim to encourage integration of services and improve care provision to this group of clients.

More Information: http://www.healthsci.utas.edu.au/tson/index.html
Contact: Professor Mary FitzGerald
M.Fitzgerald@utas.edu.au
Phone: Phone: 03 6222 7558