In Australia, as within many western countries, Scope of Practice Decision Making Frameworks/Tools have been endorsed by our regulatory authorities to assist nurses to make clear and transparent decisions about their practice.
Such SOP Tools aim to;
- provide a tool for nurses to use when considering, determining and/or self assessing their individual practice
- provide a tool for employers, managers, and policy makers to interpret, plan and apply practice
- clarify expectations of nursing practice
- describe nursing accountability and responsibility
- present performance criteria for nurses
- stimulate professional discussion and awareness in relation to scope of practice decision making
- articulate a framework for decision making against which nurses may be investigated for unprofessional conduct or incompetence
That which the individual nurse is
The scope of practice of an individual nurse may be more specifically defined than the scope of nursing professional practice as a whole. The scope of practice of the profession is broader than that of the individual nurse, the broadest parameters of which are set by legislation and professional standards and individual practice parameters determined by individual competence, knowledge and skill and largely by organisational policy and culture.