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Kerri-Ann Hughes

Doctor of Philosophy, (Health Science)
Study Completed: 2013
College of Health


Thesis Title
Making sense of the Director of Nursing structural positioning in New Zealand public hospitals (2006-2012)

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Leadership is vital to all organisations and nursing leadership is a critical influence on effective patient outcomes in public hospitals. The research examined the structural positioning of Directors of Nursing (DONs) in the public hospital system in New Zealand. A case study methodology using qualitative questionnaires was utilised. The research found that the current structural positioning of the DoN is hindered by the existing dual accountability line reporting structures in DHBs and this is a barrier to aligning with international best practice principles which provide evidence for the basis of effective patient outcomes.  The focus primarily adopted by  NZ District health Boards on professional line reporting only for nursing is not conducive to achieving effective and safe patient outcomes. This focus removes the authority and control from the DoN and yet retains an expectation of full accountability for effective and safe patient outcomes within the public hospital setting.

Professor Jenny Carryer
Professor Jill White

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