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humanism of nursing and the managerialism of the cost corporate market model in the 1990s (Bamford & Porter-O’Grady, 2000; White, 2004). For example, a DHB articulates its outcomes in terms familiar with the cost corporate model reflected in the CNL’s position description, including terminology like performance measures and accountabilities. Nursing measures are communicated in terms of humanism with a holistic approach adopted to patient care. This is derived from their professional context and curriculum that shapes the student to achieve degree status as a Registered Nurse to practice. Nursing is grounded in the humanities and science, not in business. Significantly White adds: “The professional and business cultures not only have a different values base but have their own language systems” (p. 184).

This research revealed this mismatch between the profession of nursing and the culture of business, in this case the CNLs’ expectations and the organisation’s requirements of the role. Qualitative and quantitative research approaches are often described as occupying completely opposite positions, much like the CNL and the organisation, with differing expectations and language attached to outcomes. Although Onweugbuzie (2000) is referring to these two research paradigms, his term of adopting an ecumenical approach for better outcomes in research resonates and may be what is needed here. An ecumenical or combined approach to seek better understanding of each other’s role may well enhance the relationship between the profession of nursing and the culture of business such as in DHBs.


Insight and Recommendations for Stakeholders

The District Health Board and Clinical Nurse Leaders- Inextricably Linked

The action research group explored a key role that could not be separated from its context, the District Health Board. The research findings were related to the role of a CNL responding to their environment. The DHB, as a funder and provider of health services to its population, employs senior nurses to fulfil this function within its clinical management structure. Both the DHB and the CNL have responsibilities that fall out of their inextricable link.


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