Child and adolescent mental health nurses' perceptions of their professional identity: an exploratory study

Philippa Enid Rasmussen, Tiffany Anne Conroy, Mette Grønkjær

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Purpose: Nurses with specialised knowledge, experience and education are needed to provide specific care in nursing subspecialties such as child and adolescent mental health (CAMH) nursing. However, some of these attributes are implicit and not clear to the wider nursing community. The purpose of this paper is to explore the applicability of a conceptual framework for CAMH inpatient nursing practice to other areas of CAMH nursing practice. This paper presents an exploratory study regarding the applicability of the framework to two small cohorts of CAMH nurses. This study was conducted in Tasmania, Australia and Northern Denmark. These settings were chosen due to the self-perceived knowledge gap surrounding the role and professional identity of these Australian and Danish CAMH nurses. Design/methodology/approach: An exploratory qualitative study within the social constructivist paradigm was undertaken. The method of data collection was two focus groups of CAMH nurses in Tasmania, Australia and Northern Denmark. The data were analysed using an adaptation of a six-phase thematic analysis process. Findings: The analysis of the data resulted in three themes: individual preparation and experience of CAMH nurses, knowledge transfer and nurses’ perceptions of their individual and team roles. The findings have contributed new knowledge of CAMH nursing. Originality/value: The findings of this study may support the applicability of the conceptual framework with participants’ endorsing that it reflects their role.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-291
Number of pages11
JournalThe Journal of Mental Health Training, Education and Practice
Volume12
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Sep 2017
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Professional identity
  • Qualitative research
  • Role
  • Child and adolescent mental health nursing
  • Qualitative research
  • Child and adolescent mental health nursing
  • Professional identity

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