Title: The transition of internationally qualified nurses specialty skills to developed countries clinical practice after immigration: A mixed method research
Purpose: Recruitment of internationally qualified nurses (IQNs) is one of the long-standing human resource strategies to address the global nursing shortage in developed countries. Many IQNs immigrate with extensive specialist nursing skills. Specialty skill sets enable nurses to think differently and critically in a specific nursing field Working in a department other than their specialty may impede the nurses' full effectiveness and in some instances? lead to adverse patient events. A critical challenge of IQN?immigration is deskilling or downward occupational mobility in the host country. A lack of a clear pathway to utilise specialty skills of IQNs makes recognising and utilising these skills complex for nurses. The specialised expertise that IQNs bring to the host country, such as Intensive Care Unit (ICU), cardiology, respiratory, and renal, is in high demand in developed countries but is often underutilised. This exploratory, descriptive mixed-methods study aimed to explore how IQNs transfer their specialty skills to?developed countries after immigration. This research is conducted in two phases. Informed by the literature review, in-phase one, data was gathered from IQNs and recruiting managers through online surveys in Australia. Social media, publicly available hospital contact information, and snowballing were all used to recruit participants. Phase two will involve a focus group conducted on a video conferencing platform, and the participants will be recruited from the phase one-survey. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used for the quantitative and content analysis for the qualitative data. The findings so far indicate that the registering body and first employers do not provide systematic support for IQNs and that the financial burden that nurses must bear results in the underutilisation of specialty skills. The ability of nurses to transition between countries and maintain speciality practice demands immediate attention in the current atmosphere of the global pandemic and nurse scarcity The results are useful for registering bodies, health services, and policymakers in developed countries in planning how to make the best use of their IQNs, to ensure the nurse are utilising their full skill sets to provide optimal patient care. Along with providing a baseline for further research, the study can be used as a reference point for IQNs before, during or after immigration and to increase the knowledge base related to IQN immigration and associated skill utilisation.