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Characterising the evidence base for advanced clinical practice in the UK: A scoping review protocol

Evans, Catrin; Poku, Brenda; Pearce, Ruth; Eldridge, Jeanette; Hendrick, Paul; Knaggs, Roger; McCluskey, John; Tomczak, Philippa; Thow, Ruaridh; Harris, Peter; Conway, Joy; Collier, Richard

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Professor of Evidence Based Healthcare

Ruth Pearce

Jeanette Eldridge

Paul Hendrick

Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice

Ruaridh Thow

Peter Harris

Joy Conway

Richard Collier


© Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2020. Re-use permitted under CC BY-NC. No commercial re-use. See rights and permissions. Published by BMJ. Introduction A global health workforce crisis, coupled with ageing populations, wars and the rise of non-communicable diseases is prompting all countries to consider the optimal skill mix within their health workforce. The development of advanced clinical practice (ACP) roles for existing non-medical cadres is one potential strategy that is being pursued. In the UK, National Health Service (NHS) workforce transformation programmes are actively promoting the development of ACP roles across a wide range of non-medical professions. These efforts are currently hampered by a high level of variation in ACP role development, deployment, nomenclature, definition, governance and educational preparation across the professions and across different settings. This scoping review aims to support a more consistent approach to workforce development in the UK, by identifying and mapping the current evidence base underpinning multiprofessional advanced level practice in the UK from a workforce, clinical, service and patient perspective. Methods and analysis This scoping review is registered with the Open Science Framework ( The review will follow Joanna Briggs Institute guidance and involves a multidisciplinary and multiprofessional team, including a public representative. A wide range of electronic databases and grey literature sources will be searched from 2005 to the present. The review will include primary data from any relevant research, audit or evaluation studies. All review steps will involve two or more reviewers. Data extraction, charting and summary will be guided by a template derived from an established framework used internationally to evaluate ACP (the Participatory Evidence-Informed Patient-Centred Process-Plus framework). Dissemination The review will produce important new information on existing activity, outcomes, implementation challenges and key areas for future research around ACP in the UK, which, in the context of global workforce transformations, will be of international, as well as local, significance. The findings will be disseminated through professional and NHS bodies, employer organisations, conferences and research papers.


Evans, C., Poku, B., Pearce, R., Eldridge, J., Hendrick, P., Knaggs, R., …Collier, R. (2020). Characterising the evidence base for advanced clinical practice in the UK: A scoping review protocol. BMJ Open, 10(5), Article e036192.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 2, 2020
Online Publication Date May 20, 2020
Publication Date May 20, 2020
Deposit Date Apr 6, 2020
Publicly Available Date May 20, 2020
Journal BMJ Open
Electronic ISSN 2044-6055
Publisher BMJ Publishing Group
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 10
Issue 5
Article Number e036192
Keywords General Medicine
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Evans C, Poku B, Pearce R, et al Characterising the evidence base for advanced clinical practice in the UK: a scoping review protocol
BMJ Open 2020;10:e036192. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-036192


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