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  1. St-Amant, Oona MScN, RN
  2. Ward-Griffin, Catherine PhD, RN
  3. Brown, Judith Belle PhD
  4. Martin-Matthews, Anne PhD
  5. Sutherland, Nisha MScN, RN
  6. Keefe, Janice PhD
  7. Kerr, Michael S. PhD


An emergent grounded theory was used to examine Professionalizing Familial Care, the processes by which registered nurses enact professional care work within the familial care domain. A sample of registered nurses (n = 32) were interviewed by telephone at multiple time points over a 6- to 12-month period. The findings revealed that the professionalization of care work was often reinforced by societal, familial, and self-expectations. Setting Limits and Making Connections were the dialectical overarching processes shaping the professionalizing of care while 6 interdependent substrategies emerged: assessing, advising, advocating, collaborating, coordinating, and consulting. These findings will help inform refinement of policies and practices for nurses who provide care for an older relative.