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Choices and challenges - The strategy for research and development in nursing and midwifery in Scotland


Choices and challenges

Choices and challenges...

There is good evidence that research understanding and activity in the nursing and midwifery professions in Scotland have been growing steadily over many years, and particularly rapidly over the last decade. The 2001 Research Assessment Exercise demonstrated an overall improvement in nursing and midwifery's research performance in the higher education sector, but also highlighted areas of ongoing concern (RAE, 2001) ( see Appendix 2). A similar pattern is evident in the NHS sector in Scotland. The improvements and concerns in both sectors, and in all of the settings in which nurses and midwives work, have significant implications for the future growth and development of nursing and midwifery research.

Moving forward presents many challenges and some tough choices as nurses and midwives explore how best to maximise opportunities within the current environment and how partnership and collaboration models can become essential features of nursing and midwifery research and development.

Many challenges will be faced in delivering on this strategy. In particular, the need to define foci for nursing and midwifery research which reflect the needs of the people of Scotland and wider NHSScotland research priority areas will be a complex and complicated process. Ultimately, however, the strategy sets the platform from which nursing and midwifery research can look towards making a significant contribution to the research and development agenda and, consequently, the delivery of quality health and health care services to the people of Scotland.