Objective: This project describes the development and testing of the actual scope of nursing practice questionnaire.
Background: Underutilization of the skill sets of registered nurses (RNs) is a widespread concern. Cost-effective, safe, and efficient care requires support by management to facilitate the implementation of nursing practice at the full scope.
Methods: Literature review, expert consultation, and face validity testing were used in item development. The instrument was tested with 285 nurses in 22 medical units in 11 hospitals in Canada.
Results: The 26-item, 6-dimension questionnaire demonstrated validity and reliability. The responses suggest that nurses practice at less than their optimal scope, with key dimensions of professional practice being implemented infrequently.
Conclusions: This instrument can help nurse leaders increase the effective use of RN time in carrying out the full scope of their professional practice.