Advanced Practice Nursing Role
South University provides consistent training to prepare high-quality nursing specialists. The university offers a wide range of study areas including educational programs for Nursing Practitioners. The role of this specialist is critical for medical practice. Thus, an Advanced Nursing Practitioner is a nurse that provides primary care to patients. This general task comprises a large scope of responsibilities: handling medical histories, performing physical examinations, treating and evaluating acute illnesses. Also, an Advanced Nursing Practitioner is in charge of prescribing medications and providing relevant prevention services. Therefore, a patient’s condition depends on the proficiency of this specialist. Finally, Advanced Nursing Practitioners are expected to be able to assess adequately a patient’s condition and decide whether there is a need for a referral for any specialized care. As a result, the role of an Advanced Nursing Practitioner is highly significant as this specialist determines largely the course of the entire treatment process.
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The role of an Advanced Nursing Practitioner can be defined as non-clinical, and it is very important in terms of safety promotion. Thus, according to National Patient Safety Goals (NPSGs), this type of specialist can contribute to promoting patients’ safety in a series of ways.
First and foremost, an Advanced Nursing Practitioner should improve patient identification. NPSGs suggest that this can be achieved through the implementation of the minimum of two patient identifiers in the course of treatment and services provided. Secondly, an Advanced Nursing Practitioner can contribute to the promotion of medication safety by reducing the risks of harm related to anticoagulant therapy. Moreover, in the framework of medication safety, this specialist is also supposed to maintain the accuracy of any medical information associated with a patient’s condition. Thirdly, an Advanced Nursing Practitioner is expected to participate in reducing the likeliness of infections. Hence, NPSGs advise these specialists to comply with any of the officially established hygiene guidelines and use only evidence-based practices. Furthermore, Advanced Nursing Practitioners should focus on fall prevention to promote patient safety. Finally, NPSGs points out another critical function that these specialists are expected to perform – the timely assessment of the risks for pressure ulcers’ development (National Patient Safety Goals, 2016).
There is a large scope of studies aimed at examining the role of an Advanced Nursing Practitioner. Hence, for example, a group of researchers from the University of Central Lancashire has recently published a study aimed at investigating “the role of a ward-based Advanced Nurse Practitioners” (Williamson, Twelvetree, Thompson, & Beaver, 2012, p.1580). According to British researchers, there are currently few studies that would clearly define the role of an Advanced Nursing Practitioner, so they assumed it rational to fill in the existing gap. The researchers employed an ethnographic approach to complete the set target; the principal methods that they used were observations and interviews. Basing on the obtained results, the researchers concluded that the role of these specialists is more important than it is typically considered to be. Thus, Advanced Nursing Specialists facilitate not only patient care but the general medical practice as well. In their conclusion, Williamson et al. define this role as “pivotal” (1587).
Another research, which also studies the role of an Advanced Nursing Practitioner, focuses on a more specific question – the importance of this specialist in the framework of promoting evidence-based practices. The researchers suggest that this role is highly significant as Advanced Nursing Practitioners might serve to be the only delivers of evidence-based practices for clinical nurses (Gerrish, McDonnell, Nolan, Guillaume, Kirshbaum, & Tod, 2011). They also employ observations and interviews to collect targeted data. Their research shows that Advanced Nursing Practitioners perform the role of the so-called “knowledge brokers” (Gerrish et al., 2011, p.2011). In other words, these specialists employ different methods, such as role modeling and clinical problem-solving, to manage clinical nurses’ knowledge. Both studies provide evidence for the significance of the Advanced Nursing Practitioner’s role.
Expert Opinion Article
Even though numerous studies have been carried out to define the role of an Advanced Nursing Practitioner, some experts believe that the current definition still lacks clarity. Hence, in 2012, a group of Australian experts from Monash University published an article aimed at drawing the attention of the medical community to the need for a precise evaluation of the role of an Advanced Nursing Practitioner. In their article, Lowe, Plummer, O’Brien, and Boyd (2012) point out the key problem that requires solution: the improvement of “international standards of nursing titles and scopes of practice” (678). They believe that until these standards are not improved, the value of the role of an Advanced Nursing Practitioner will be underestimated. Although the authors admit the fact that a large scope of work has already been done in this domain, they still insist on the implementation of the common international standard that would clearly describe the role of these specialists and the practices that they are expected to carry out (Lowe et al., 2012).
Gerrish, K., McDonnell, A., Nolan, M., Guillaume, L., Kirshbaum, M., & Tod, A. (2011). The role of advanced practice nurses in knowledge brokering as a means of promoting evidence-based practice among clinical nurses. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 67(9), 2004-2014.
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Lowe, G., Plummer, V., O’Brien, A.P., & Boyd, L. (2012). Time to clarify – the value of advanced practice nursing roles in health care. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 68(3), 677-685.
National Patient Safety Goals. (2016). Web.
Williamson, S., Twelvetree, T., Thompson, J., & Beaver, K. (2012). An ethnographic study exploring the role of ward-based Advanced Nurse Practitioners in an acute medical setting. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 68(7), 1579-1588.