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SN Onwe

International Research Journal of Public and Environmental Health
Vol.1(10),pp.202-206, December 2014
ISSN 2360-8803
Article 14/ID/JPRH075/ 06 pages
Author(s) agree that this article remain permanently open access under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0 International License


Transformational leadership in nursing: The case of Ebonyi State in Nigeria

Onwe, Simon Nwigboji

Department of Nursing Science, Faculty of Health Science and Technology, Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki, Nigeria.

Author’s Email: onwesim(at)
Tel.: +2348036576867, +447438291735

date Received:     date Accepted: December 26, 2014     date Published:


Nurses contribute substantially to health care delivery the world over but they are rarely involved in policy formulation and decision making on issues affecting health in many countries (World Health Organisation, 2007). This is attributed to the perceived low status of nursing education which is basically diploma-awarding schools of nursing (Senior and Fleming, 2006). Transformational leadership in nursing seems to be a proven solution to this problem. Ebonyi State experienced transition from trait based leadership style to transformational leadership in 2003. Prior to the transition in Ebonyi State, nurses had no voice and their needs were not communicated to the appropriate authorities. Many nurses who were due for promotion were stagnated as a result. After the transition, a graduate nurse with M.Sc. in nursing education took over as a substantive director of nursing in the state. The needs of the nurses were appropriately communicated and many whose promotions were hitherto stagnated were massively promoted. There was also a mass enrolment of many nurses who had diploma in nursing into a university-based degree in nursing. Although the transition experienced a lot of challenges, the impact was rewarding and it can be inferred that transformational leadership seems appropriate for the desired reforms in nursing.

Key words: Reforms, nursing, leadership theory, transformational leadership, Nigeria civil service rules