Transforming nursing, midwifery and health professionals roles: district nursing roles

The third in a series of brief papers on the Transforming Roles programme outlines how district nursing roles are being developed in NHSScotland.

Annex 3: Core components of education themed around the four pillars of practice

Clinical practice

  • Clinical assessment skills, including:
    • history-taking, physical examination, cognitive assessment and an approach that fosters a bio-psychosocial model
    • critical thinking and clinical decision-
    • making objective and appropriate referrals
  • Nurse independent/supplementary prescribing (V300)
  • Care skills, including:
    • for people with complex needs and multiple long-term conditions
    • for carers
    • specific clinical skills, such as rehydration therapy, intravenous antibiotic therapy, care of central venous catheters, chemotherapy, parenteral and enteral feeding
    • communication
  • Palliative and end-of-life care
  • Anticipatory care
  • Person-centred care approaches, including:
    • supporting self-management, behaviour change, motivational interviewing, compassionate care, personal outcomes, asset-/strength-based approaches and co-production
  • Public health
  • A range of skills related to e-health and technology to enable care and support self-management
  • Mental health and wellbeing

Facilitation of learning

  • Support and supervision
  • Reflective practice
  • Creating a learning environment
  • Teaching, learning and assessment
  • Clinical supervision
  • Coaching
  • Mentorship


  • Lead and manage the district nursing, multidisciplinary and multi-agency team to deliver care in the home and community
  • Change management, including building resilience in self and others
  • Caseload management, including delegation and referral
  • Risk management
  • Performance management
  • Supervision of care provided by others
  • Handling complaints and feedback
  • Locality and strategic planning
  • Knowledge of local community needs and resources
  • Financial management
  • Improvement methodology
  • Professionalism
  • Integrated working
  • Communication skills, including motivational interviewing, negotiation, liaison with other agencies and services, use of technology

Evidence, research and development

  • Knowledge regarding sources of evidence
  • Ability to generate, manage and utilise data
  • Ability to critically examine research, including:
    • its application to clinical practice
    • facilitate and participate in research
    • dissemination where appropriate
  • Population surveillance and interventions to improve community and individual health and wellbeing
  • Measurement of effectiveness of care


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