Complexity theory: a long-term care specialty practice exemplar for the education of advanced practice nurses.
This clinical exemplar highlights how an academic clinical practice supported gerontological nursing students as they learned evidence-based approaches to managing complex geriatric syndromes in long-term care. Urinary incontinence (UI), which occurs in more than two thirds of nursing home residents, was the focus of the faculty practice. Advanced practice nursing skills developed by students included advanced physical assessment and diagnostic reasoning techniques, critical appraisal of the scientific evidence for UI management, and the ability to teach evidence-based approaches to UI care to bedside nursing staff. Outcomes of the practice for the facilities included improved detection of urinary retention, reduced wetness rates, and strengthened systems of care for UI. Student outcomes included an increased sense of self-efficacy in management of UI and other complex geriatric problems. Complexity theory guides a discussion of how curriculum design and research-based practices can be implemented to enhance both student and facility outcomes.
McConnell, ES; Lekan-Rutledge, D; Nevidjon, B; Anderson, R
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