The aims of this study were to describe nurses’ perceptions of nursing activities and analyze for consistency with top-of-license (TOL) practice.BACKGROUND
The Advisory Board Company expert panel proposed 8 TOL core nursing responsibilities representing practice at its potential. Thus far, no empirical work has examined nursing practices relative to TOL, from staff nurses’ points of view.METHODS
This qualitative study used focus groups to explore perceptions of typical nursing activities. We analyzed activities for themes that described nurses’ work during typical shifts.RESULTS
Nurses’ full scope of work included TOL-consistent categories, as well as categories that did not exemplify TOL practice, such as nonnursing care. A proposed model was developed, which depicts nurses’ total scope of work, inclusive of all activity categories. In addition, hindrances to TOL practice were also identified.CONCLUSIONS
Findings from this study can inform leadership imperatives and the development of innovative, sustainable nursing practice models that support nursing practice at TOL.