The rural way: Rural nurses’ contribution to new models of health care, reducing health disparities - stories from practice

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Ross, J.
Crawley, J.
Parmee, R.
Rusangwa, Christian
Ngā Upoko Tukutuku (Māori subject headings)
New Zealand
rural nurses
narrative inquiry
delivery of health care
COVID-19 Pandemic, 2020-
ANZSRC Field of Research Code (2020)
Ross, J. Crawley, J. & Parmee, R. (2023). The rural way: Rural nurses’ contribution to new models of health care, reducing health disparities - stories from practice. In C. Rusangwa (Ed.) Rural health: Investment, research and implications [Working title] (pp. 1-18). IntechOpen.
This chapter reports on a research project that set out to capture the unique stories from rural nurses from Aotearoa, New Zealand. During the past three decades changing socio-political and economic contexts have affected the delivery of health care while rural nurses have responded with new models of practice which has resulted in an emerging rural nurse discourse related and specific to rural New Zealand. Rural nurses have maintained and, in some cases, improved the health care of these rural communities. A total of 26 rural nurse participants shared their stories providing data to explore the structured phenomenon of rural nursing in New Zealand. Personal and human dimensions are illuminated, as the in-depth meaning of the experience is described by each individual storyteller. Interviews were conducted to collect retrospective stories uncovering the participants’ rural nurse journey. Revealed are a sense of place and people, involving what nurses’ express, as the rural way. A nursing discourse is developed which complements and extends international theories. The rural nurse of New Zealand is imbued with pioneering spirit; entrepreneurial practice shaped by their rural communities highlighting what we suggest is the rural way. Further expansion of the rural way was uncovered with follow up interviews exploring their practice during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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© 2023 Authors
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Licensee IntechOpen. This chapter is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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