Professional Practice Portfolio: Nursing Practice
Describe a professional practice portfolio and the recommended components. • Present a written argument for the use of a professional practice portfolio to demonstrate professional nursing practice. This argument should demonstrate critical thinking and analysis of the issues; include why portfolios should be used and a discussion of the benefits and challenges of using a professional practice portfolio to demonstrate capability for professional nursing practice. • Discuss and differentiate between management and leadership competencies and describe how development of these competencies could be evidenced in a professional practice portfolio. • Support your argument with at least seven scholarly sources from 2014 onwards
With the progression of nursing career, the vitality of keeping up-to-date and accurate record of one’s journey becomes more prominent. Beyond the logbooks or even certificate collections, developing a professional practice portfolio (PPP) is an efficient way of preserving academic, clinical, and professional accomplishments – facilitating a reflective practice and clinical enquiry in the provision of comprehensive professional record (Chamblee, et al., 2015). A professional portfolio practice is a documentation of vivid description of evidence-based competency of an individual based on skills, professional practice, and experience – assessing the application of knowledge in practice with the influence of values and development (Ellis, 2019). Portfolio offers peers, potential employers, and education faculty alike, comprehensive information on your progress in the professional path based on independent and interdependent accountability and responsibility of actions, as required of registered nurses. A portfolio’s scope exceeds a resume’s as it inculcates evidence of competencies and expertise developed from the experiences. Portfolio requires autonomy, reflection, organization, self-direction, and honesty.
A professional practice portfolio should include Recency of Practice, Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and Curriculum Vitae. The National Board’s recency of practice registration standards have to be contained in the portfolio which is demonstrated by time thresholds (minimum of three months full time within the past five years), and/or approved re-entry program, and/or approved period of supervised practice experience. CPD is demonstrated by evidence of verification of learning, Mandatory education/competence compliance evidence, and learning reflections, as explained by Filipe, et al. (2014). The curriculum vitae details education summary (including studies undertaken and qualifications attained), employment details of gaps in practice of more than three months within the past five years, job descriptions from current and previous employments.
As an organized collection of evidences of ongoing professional practice, learning and development, professional practice portfolio stands on an elevated platform in demonstrating nursing practice. Chamblee (2015) sets out that a portfolio is a concrete means for recognizing and rewarding clinical leadership, excellence in practice, and professional and personal development of a nurse. While career development is a retrospective matter, keeping an updated portfolio enhances various aspects of assessing development in the nursing profession. Documentation of the portfolio aids in inhibition of haphazard settlement on important continual developments along the nursing career path and hence create platform for self-assessment as well as personal development planning in its provision for articulation of career and professional goals. The role of a portfolio in demonstration of experiential activities in the developmental paths of an individual and accreditation along progressive scales stands out among others. Therefore, since its 1995 inception, portfolio use has grown from obligation to necessity as its influence has widened invariably (Franklin, & Melville, 2015).
Also, portfolios are integrally important for career enhancement. In recent decades, the association between professional development, education and registrants’ training, and fitness for practice has been incessantly denotative. The Nursing and Midwifery Board includes maintenance of personal professional portfolio of learning activity in fostering this relationship in the path of professional development. In order to meet practice standards, it is necessitated that evidence-focused outcomes be collected to evidence continual professional development. For smooth registration by the Board, maintenance of a robust portfolio documenting evidence of these practice activities is mandatory.
Competence, defined as skills and abilities towards safe and effective practice without necessitated supervision, is a reasonable expectation of a registered nurse in every relevant domain. The best evidences for competence is indicated in the portfolio. This information is beneficial to both the employer and the individual practitioner in a wide array of aspects. Among the benchmarks of a portfolio are validity, sufficiency, authenticity, reliability, and currency – the very generic criteria assessing the qualities of a professional while making projections of quality assurance and competence (Nicol, & Dosser, 2016).
In spite of its cardinal advantages over traditional methods, PPP is underpinned by certain challenges. The highlighted challenges with portfolios, especially in their assessment roles, are non-completion and difficulty in assessment – what is the criteria to use in assessment through a portfolio. Another problem with portfolios. Especially for third-party readers, is that they are simply reflective records if historical outcomes – based on this, there is no empirical way of dealing with biasness probabilities as truthfulness in the evidences cannot be ascertained but accepted by goodwill, as also opined by Wald (2015).
Management and Leadership
Management refers to the array of processes that enhance the functionality of an organization (keep it functioning). This set of operations include planning budgeting, staffing, clarifying jobs, performance measuring, and problem-solving (Kantanen, et al., 2017). The roles of nurse managers have boundlessly evolved over time, leading to capital authority and responsibility. The role of nurse manager is vastly defined with responsibility of provision of effective and high quality care in a healthcare setting – ideally, this is the CEO of the clinical area, according to Linda Everett (Gunawan, & Aungsuroch, 2017). The competencies for nurse managers are encapsulated in four categories: operational management, human resource management, operational knowledge, and research and development.
Leadership, on the other hand, is defined as an ethical, relational, continuous, and dynamic process among group of people characterized by common goal for positive change. It is about aligning people to a certain course/vision. Leadership is strongly correlated with influence over others, with primal goals of innovation and implementation of health systems, embedded with nurses’ commitment in the organization. Leadership competencies are seen in advocacy, communication, inspiration, and motivation (Weber, Ward, & Walsh, 2015). Consequentially, this leads to an evidence-based practice (professional practice portfolio) that births provision of increased quality care.
While there is distinction between leadership and management concepts, there is notable overlap in terms of skills that nurse managers require. The concept of these competencies describe the attribute, skills, and knowledge with which a manager should be endowed for expertise in his/her field (Baxter, & Warshawsky, 2014). While nurse manager and leader complement each other in up close roles, leadership roles are expansive while management roles are overly specific or restricted.
While differentiation in terms of competencies between leadership and management are laid in the deficiency of competency skills for nurse managers, as well as primary vision of the profession, it stands out that both competencies are rightly important for inclusion in the portfolio for professional purposes. It is a basic professional requirement for nurses to maintain high competence, especially being viewed from the lenses of leadership. While the competencies may not be certified, a performance review documentation with articulate discoursing of the competencies is important in one’s PPP.
In my clinical placement, a situation of delegated responsibility that called for high professional standards is significantly noticeable in my professional development. Having been placed at Royal Brisbane Hospital, I was delegated the responsibility of catheter insertion for te first time. As it is, the insertion of an indwelling catheter is an invasive procedure that should only be carried out by a qualified competent health care professional using aseptic technique, as by practice ethics. However, my clinical facilitator saw the necessity of involving me in the dire process.