An exploration of the role of global Government Chief Nursing & Midwifery Officers in creating the condition for the delivery of contemporary systemic person-centred models of nursing and midwifery practice.

   Faculty of Health and Life Sciences

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  Prof Tanys McCance  No more applications being accepted  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

Whilst the Government Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer (GCNMO) role has been in place for over a century, the roles of these national nurse leaders have evolved and become a focal point for global nursing and midwifery development. In the face of global cost-driven health reform, climate change, workforce challenges, an increase in health inequalities and significant issues of poor care, the positioning of GCNMO is even more important than ever to develop contemporary nursing and midwifery practice. GCNMOs have a clear role in influencing health policy, but also in setting direction for the professional practice and delivery of healthcare in their countries (WHO 2015). Despite the important actual and potential roles of GCNMOs, very little work has been done to systematically study the key issues that they face, the skill sets needed to influence and develop nursing and midwifery practice to provide better outcomes from care.

In the current climate, post COVID19, nurses and midwives have suffered burnout, moral distress and emotional stress. The role of the GCNMO is therefore essential to re-establish and modernise the context of high-fidelity person-centred nursing and midwifery practice. Due to these multiple pressures, task orientated care has become the default mode of practice for many nurses and midwives. This has contributed to an emerging identity crisis in nursing and midwifery, which is compounded by recruitment and retention difficulties, experienced worldwide.

The aim of this project is to explore the role of GCNMO in creating the condition for the delivery of contemporary systemic person-centred models of nursing and midwifery at levels, from policy to practice. This study will employ a mixed methods approach using both quantitative and qualitative data collection methods. The theoretical underpinnings for this study will be the Person-centred Practice Framework (McCance & McCormack 2021).

Medicine (26) Nursing & Health (27)


McCance T & McCormack B (2021) The Person-centred Practice Framework. In McCormack B, McCance T, Bulley C, Brown D, McMillan A & Martin S (Editors) (2021) Fundamentals of Person-Centred Healthcare Practice, 23-32. Oxford, Wiley-Blackwell
Salmon ME and Rambo K. (2002) Government Chief Nursing Officers: A study of the key issues they face, and the knowledge and skills required by their roles. International Council of Nurses. International Nursing Review; 49(30):136–143.
WHO (2015) Roles and responsibilities of government chief nursing and midwifery officers: a capacity building manual. World Health Organisation. Available at 15178_GCNMOs Roles, Responsibilities and Competency Framework for Web.pdf (
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 About the Project