Introduction: In the rapidly growing and evolving healthcare systems, Continuing Professional Development (CPD) has become essential for nurses to update their knowledge and skills, achieve and maintain their competencies, and elevate their clinical functioning with the aim of providing a high standard quality of healthcare to the public as the ultimate goal. Moreover, CPD has been mandated as a licensure renewal requirement for nurses in the UAE. However, despite its importance, there is a lack of empirical studies about the effectiveness of CPD programmes in the UAE.
Aim: This study explores and investigates the perspective of registered nurses (RNs), regarding the effectiveness of the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in the UAE in order to develop CPD strategies.
Research design: Advanced Multiphase Mixed Method.
Methods: The study constitutes three phases:
• Phase one is qualitative; data was collected through four exploratory focus group interviews with RNs from all geographical areas in Abu Dhabi. They were selected through expert purposive sampling strategy from the same selected facilities as per the sampling of phase two. Data was analysed by “Thematic Analysis Style” using QSR NVivo software.
• Phase two is quantitative descriptive; a modified questionnaire Q-PDN (Questionnaire-Professional Development for Nurses) was used to collect data from RNs. The sample was selected from a population of 18,910 RNs through probability stratified sampling, utilising the probability proportional to size (PPS) sampling due to the unequal size of the units. The sample size was 400 with a 655 response rate. Data was analysed by using the SPSS software yielding descriptive and inferential statistics.
• Phase three is qualitative Appreciative Inquiry where meeting(s) were conducted with nursing “key players” in the Abu Dhabi, adopting the 5-D Cycle. The nursing ‘key players” represent the role of the nursing leaders in Abu Dhabi. Data was analysed using simultaneous targeted participatory thematic analysis.
Results and conclusion: The CPD strategic recommendations were developed based on the RNs’ needs and perceptions and aligned with the benchmarked international CPD practices. The main consideration was the evidence of an existing relationship between the perceived influencing factors and the RNs’ participation in CPD. The study has numerous implications towards developing CPD strategies and policies, contribution to body of knowledge, and benefiting the nurses.
Keywords: Continuing Professional Development, Strategy Development, Nursing