Advanced Practice Nursing in Kenya

Aga Khan University – School of Nursing and Midwifery, East Africa
Kenyan Nurses Association


The role of the Advanced Practice Nurse in Kenya is in development(Rasul, 2020; Sahib et al., 2020).  They role has yet to be developed and has met significant pushback in the past to attempt to advance nursing practice (East et al, 2014).  

Some of the greatest barriers identified include: lack of advanced nursing role regulation, lack of regional benchmark, medical profession (Dela Christmals, Crous, & Armstrong, 2019; East et al, 2014).  Meanwhile, significant healthcare gaps, particularly throughout rural parts of Kenya along with nurses making up the majority of Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) drives the advancement of nursing practice to promote Kenya’s health disparities (Dela Christmals, Crous, & Armstrong, 2019).  

While the role has not been yet developed, Kenya has made significant strides to facilitate the process to advance nursing practice.   In November 2020, the Aga Khan University in Pakistan, hosted a conference to promote the role of the Advanced Practice Nurse in Pakistan and West Africa, and during that conference Rasul (2020, November) reported expanded masters level education programs for Advanced Practice Nurses in Kenya and reported a midwifery program would be developed by 2021.  

Most recently, the Aga Khan University posted on May 6, 2022 that the Kenyan government approved the nursing and midwifery policy facilitated by the AKU demonstrating the imminent implementation of a formal APN role in Kenya and SSA.


Meanwhile, Kirigia (2020) presented that the Child Health Nurse Practitioner curriculum has been nearly implemented.  This would establish the first formal initiative to provide quality graduate-level education advanced nursing practice role in the country and SSA.  The focus of the CHNP focus was determined by the majority population of SSA and being regarded as the most vulnerable to disease burden (Dela Christmals, Crous, & Armstrong, 2019).

Have information to add to this page?

Aga Khan University. (May 6, 2022). Government approves nursing and midwifery policy conveniened by AKU.  Retrieved July 9, 2022 from:

Dela Christmals, C. & Armstrong, S.J. (2019). The essence, opportunities and threats to advanced practice nursing in Sub-Saharan Africa: A scoping review. Heliyon. 5(2019). doi:10.1016/j.heliyon.2019.e02531

Dela Christmals, C., Crous, L., & Armstrong, S.J. (2019). The development of concepts for a concept-based advanced practice nursing (Child health nurse practitioner) curriculum for Sub-Saharan Africa. International Journal of Caring Sciences. 12(3)1410. doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2019-035580

East, L.A., Arudo, J., Loefler, M., & Evans, C. (2014). Exploring the potential for advanced nursing practice role development in Kenya: A qualitative study. BMC Nursing. 13(33). doi:10.1186/s12912-014-0033-y

Kirigia, C. (2020). Impact of advanced practice nurses and midwives on patients’ outcomes: A systematic review. International Journal of Health Sciences and Research. 10(6). doi:10.6084/m9.figshare.1246230.v1

Rasul, F. (2020, November). President’s Address. Shaping the future: Introducing advanced practice nursing in Pakistan and East Africa.  Aga Khan University, Pakistan.  Retrieved May 22, 2022 from:

Sahib, S., Ndirangu, E., Pallangyo, E., Mbuthia, G., & Kimani, R. (2020). Introduction of an advanced practice nurse program in Kenya: A new era in nursing education.  In Sigma’s VIRTUAL 31st International Nursing Research Congress. Retrieved July 9, 2022 from: