Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario

Nursing Best Practice Guidelines

Suggested strategies for empowering nurses with information, decision supports and resources

 -Design flat organizational structures that decentralize decision-making (Carney, 2004; Englebart, 1993; Mohr & Mahon, 1996)
 -Include nurses on decision-making bodies for policy, operations and hiring (Cronkhite, 1991; Gokenbach, 2004; Mohr & Mahon, 1996) as well as finance, strategic planning and quality improvement committees (Bliss-Holtz et al., 2004; Mohr & Mahon, 1996)
 -Share governance (Devine & Turnbull, 2002; Krugman, 1989; Upenieks, 2002c)
 -Have direct-care nurses provide input through structures such as nursing councils (Erickson et al., 2003)
 -Provide education and support for nurses to participate in decision-making structures
 -Establish policies and protocols for nurses to address ethical concerns or to ‘blow the whistle’ (Erickson et al., 2003)
 -Establish policies and protocols for nurses to address professional practice issues (Erickson et al., 2003)
 -Maximize nurses’ scope of practice in all roles (Erickson et al., 2003)
 -Hold regular open discussion forums (Dubuc, 1995)

For a full list of references, please refer to the guideline at