UBC Graduate Research

Public Health Nursing In British Columbia from 1960 to 2005 : Transformations in Policy and Governance Structure--A Historical Review Taranjot, Kaur Gill


A great portion of the history of public health nursing in British Columbia is intricately linked to major public policy developments and changes in governance structure through the years. This link is not often well understood in discussions about the role of Public Health Nurses and their shifting scope of work. Understanding this link will help us identify the ways in which Public Health Nurses have come to preserve health, control disease, and treat illnesses in the province. The focus of this Scholarly Practice Advancement Research project is to examine the historical development of public health nursing in British Columbia during the period from 1960 to 2005 through the lens of public policy and governance structure. Using historical research, including oral nursing history, the project examined what key policy documents, reports, and major developments have influenced nursing practice in public health from 1960 to 2005 in British Columbia, with a particular focus on the City of Vancouver as a case example. This project further complements a series of oral history interviews with Public Health Nurses recently completed within the UBC Consortium for Nursing History Inquiry and deposited into the UBC Archives collection, and it provides historical context to the stories of the nurses who have been interviewed. By capturing the history of policy development in public health nursing, this project shows how Public Health Nurses’ work has shifted in response to the sociopolitical environment and the restructuring of the health care system in British Columbia.

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