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Developing modern primary care nursing in North Macedonia

Bryar, R. ORCID: 0000-0003-0723-5278, Groenewegen, P. P. P., Martinez, M. S. & Scotter, C. (2023). Developing modern primary care nursing in North Macedonia. Primary Health Care Research & Development, 24, article number e47. doi: 10.1017/s1463423623000348


Nurses have the potential to make a real impact on the health and well-being of people and populations and contribute to the realisation of delivery of Universal Health Coverage. However, in many parts of the world, the education and practice of nursing and nurses’ position in health care and society are restricted by a range of social, cultural, economic and political factors. In North Macedonia, the Ministry of Health in partnership with the WHO Country Office launched a primary healthcare strategy supporting the development of nurses in primary care to fulfil their full scope of service.

To present information on the education, practice and position of nursing, in particular primary care nursing, in North Macedonia and to describe the ongoing initiatives to support the further development of nursing.

Background documents reviewed, and visits to healthcare settings, organisations, interviews with individuals and groups and workshops undertaken in 2019–2020.

Three key areas of development were identified: education of nurses, their service delivery and practice in primary care, and their position in health care and society, all underpinned by the need for workforce planning. The findings formed the basis of a 10-year plan: Making Change Happen: The Nursing and Midwifery Development Roadmap.

To support the proposed primary care pilots, during the 2020/2021 COVID-19 pandemic, an on-line modular programme for primary care nurses was developed and delivered with the support of members drawn from The National Working Group for Moving Primary Care Nursing Forward in North Macedonia. Further work is planned to develop initial nurse education and to pilot changes in primary care.

The launch of the primary healthcare strategy stimulated initiatives to improve the education, position and practice of primary care nursing. The COVID-19 pandemic required flexibility and changes to the original plans.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (, which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution and reproduction, provided the original article is properly cited. © The Author(s), 2023. Published by Cambridge University Press
Publisher Keywords: continuing professional development, North Macedonia, primary care nursing
Subjects: R Medicine > RT Nursing
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences
SWORD Depositor:
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