Role and contribution of nurses for learning disabilities : a local study in a county of the Oxford–Anglia region
Thirty-two professionals (i.e. nurses, teachers and managers) working in the field of learning disabilities were interviewed regarding the current and future role of registered nurses for learning disabilities (RNLDs). The present exploratory study used semi-structured interviews based on four main research questions examining the contribution of RNLDs in terms of knowledge, practical skills, future skills and the development of services. The results show that RNLDs are held in high regard, being characterized by a breadth of knowledge, qualities and skills. The findings also make clear that differences exist in the perceptions of the different professional groups, and that the way forward for RNLDs remains unclear in both the minds of nurses and colleagues. Suggestions are made to help clarify the future position of RNLDs.