Indicators for competent nursing practice

Riitta Meretoja, Elina Eriksson, Helena Leino-Kilpi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


Aims and background This paper identifies and classifies indicators for competent nursing practice and validates these indicators in a variety of settings. Descriptive data to address competent practice in a variety of settings were collected from staff nurses, head nurses and nursing directors in an acute 1000-bed university hospital in Finland. Method The data obtained from 25 expert groups were analysed to identify a clinical set of indicators for competent nursing practice from the data. The relevance of this set of indicators in a variety of clinical settings was further validated with a second sample of expert nurses (n = 26). Thereafter, data were analysed to identify generic competencies that were applicable to all clinical working environments. Results Twenty-three generic indicators of competent nursing practice were identified in a variety of settings. The findings suggest that these competence indicators are meaningful to nurses with various backgrounds and practice settings. Conclusions Collaboration and coordination, as well as the holistic management of the situation, are highly recognized as meaningful characteristics of competent nursing practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-102
Number of pages8
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Leadership and Management


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