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Developments in Dutch health care have led to a new nursing education profile. This profile emphasizes the connecting role of community nurses and the need for professional leadership, research and evidence based practice. Baccalaureate prepared community nurses are expected to bring the best scientific evidence into direct patient care. However, there is still a gap between available scientific nursing knowledge and clinical practice.

In this project we aim to empower baccalaureate community nurses in their leadership competences to implement evidence based knowledge in daily nursing practice. In collaboration we will provide them with competences and tools to fulfill this leadership role in general and specifically targeted at the context of community dwelling people discharged from hospital and requiring home care. We built further on a previous TWD project in which we developed and evaluated the usability of the ‘Translating Innovations into Practice ‘ (TIP) toolbox to empower nurses in nursing homes in choosing and implementing adequate interventions to encourage residents to remain active. This TIP-toolbox will be the starting point of the Translating Innovations into Practice in the Community (TIP-C toolbox) for community care. The TIP-C toolbox enables community nurses to empower their leadership competences and use evidence based knowledge to increase or maintain the functional abilities of community dwelling older persons after discharge from hospital. The TIP-C toolbox will contain tools and strategies that nurses can use to systematically implement an innovation targeted at the encouragement of older people being active.

In co-creation with community care professionals, patients and informal caregivers, the TIP-C toolbox will be completed with additional relevant tools adapted to community care and assessed on its usability.

We implement the TIP-C toolbox in community care and evaluate it on process parameters and impact in a pretest-posttest design in 9 community care nursing teams of two large home care organizations in the south of the Netherlands. The focus of the evaluation is on the changes in leadership competences and use of evidence based tools of baccalaureate prepared community nurses and their team members. A mixed method approach will be used for the process evaluation to study the experiences of the teams with the TIP-C toolbox (context, fidelity, reach, exposure, satisfaction), and of patients and informal caregivers (satisfaction and patients perceived increase in activity). For the effect evaluation the outcomes are nursing self-efficacy and outcome expectations in (nurse leaders) and nurses’ perceived behavior to optimize and maintain functional activity (all other nurses and nurse assistants), self-efficacy and outcome expectations. A sample of participating patients (n=18) will be asked about the perceived increase in activity after hospital discharge regarding predefined individual patient goals.

 

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