Date of Award

Fall 11-9-2016

Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing (ND)



First Advisor

Dr. Janis Schiefelbein

Second Advisor

Dr. Jennifer Harris

Third Advisor

Dr. Janet Zepernick


Retention of nurse practitioners is a serious problem in rural medically underserved areas. This study focused on the underserved areas in southeast Kansas, southwest Missouri, and northern Oklahoma. Approximately, three million persons reside in rural medically-underserved areas of the study area. Seventy-three percent of these adults have at least two or more complex chronic medical conditions and there are only 526 nurse practitioners to care for them. Rural providers face many challenges in caring for these individuals and experience anxiety and stress while caring for them. The purpose of this research study was to explore, analyze, and describe the phenomena of nurse practitioners practicing in rural underserved medical clinics. The research explored the nurse practitioners’ attitudes and feelings related to their current position in the rural setting. The study included the concepts of professional isolation, stress or other factors that negatively affect job satisfaction and retention. A qualitative phenomenological design was used to allow the subjects to describe their lived experience of their day to day practices.

Included in

Nursing Commons