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An Advanced Practice Nurse’s Main Role


The role of any medical worker is hard to overvalue; these people make an enormous input into the development of clinical organizations and patient treatment. In particular, nurses are a significant link between the patient and the doctor; thus, it is essential to look at how the nurse’s role is included in the treatment process. This paper will analyze the role of the advanced practice nurse and the importance of nursing education in clinical practice, as well as discuss the potential advancement in career development.

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Advanced Practice and Its Competencies

First of all, the definition of an advanced practice continues to develop and change even nowadays. It depends on the particular standard and what is meant by the standard scope of nursing practice. Care needs of people continue to change, and it leads to changes in healthcare delivery services. Therefore, the duties of advanced practice nurses also vary. For example, the report of the Institute of Medicine came to suggest nurses contribute to the health safety of the population (Institute of Medicine, 2011).

Moreover, the duties and competencies of nurses were extended to undertaking patients with comprehensive mental or physical issues, interpreting results and investigations to conclude complex diagnoses, and using innovative cognitive and behavioral therapies for mentally challenged patients. It is worth noticing that there were no similar duties in nursing practice in the recent past. In addition, advanced practice nurses influence patient treatment positively and benefit medical organizations (Htay & Whitehead, 2021). Overall, the contemporary advanced practice supposes extended competencies of medical workers integrated into treatment and preventive measures.

Advanced Practice Nurse

Nurse practitioners used to be involved in areas where the population was vulnerable and required medical workers because of limited healthcare resources. Over time, the responsibilities of advanced practice nurses changed and developed. As was said above, nurses in the scope of advanced practice received expanded duties to further healthcare interventions. These can be nonmedical activities such as improvement of quality of health care and guidelines and education and management of healthcare services (Miranda Neto et al., 2018). The International Council of Nurses (ICN) introduced the definition of an advanced practice nurse. It is a nurse who possesses expert knowledge of medicine, complex clinical competencies, well-developed decision-making abilities, and relevant knowledge of the demographic background. To add to this, the advanced practice nurse should obtain advanced skills for reasoning and consulting and perform services that may be provided by doctors (Fougère et al., 2018). It is also important to note that the duties of advanced practice nurses include physical interaction with the patient (e.g., physical examination), laboratory works, prescribing suitable medical treatment and therapies. Being an advanced practice nurse is about obtaining a set of essential and professional skills.

The Role of Education in Advanced Nursing Practice

In addition, a master’s degree is highly recommended for entry-level advanced practice nurses. An advanced practice nurse should show the capacity to perform duties and make relevant decisions according to the standard of delivering healthcare services. Moreover, these nurses should know how to interpret the diagnosis in order to prescribe the proper treatment. In addition, the ICN suggests advanced practice nurses have trained through graduate programs and obtain certificates and licenses “preferably at master’s level” (Miranda Neto et al., 2018, p. 718). In this relation, education is essential for advanced practice nurses, as they refer to providing care and various services and dealing with medications. It is also important to note that nurses who come to medical organizations with a bachelor’s degree are allowed to join internships and enhance education before handling real patient cases (Institute of Medicine, 2011). Thus, a master’s degree is vital in advanced practice for nurses.

Advancement in Nursing Practice

It is essential to note that almost every medical worker is obliged to confirm or raise their level of knowledge and competence. It may refer to nursing practice as well; as seen, advanced nurse practitioners must gain enormous expertise and specific skills to make the work effective. Moreover, various universities and colleges strive to implement different programs and curriculums for a more effective and smooth transition between degrees in nursing education. For instance, the Statewide Nursing Consortiums Curriculums were created for nursing practitioners as an additional year of extra practice on the examples of simulators, case studies, and other educational activities (Institute of Medicine, 2011). These additional practices allow future nurses to train and elevate their professional level and work efficiently in healthcare organizations. What is more, an ordinary nurse practitioner can become an advanced practice nurse through receiving a relevant educational background and certification.


To sum everything up, the role of the advanced practice nurse is essential in relation to patient outcomes and medical services delivery. Advanced practice nurses should know how to comprehend and interpret diagnoses, prescribe the proper treatment, and obtain relevant skills for handling comprehensive patient cases. As seen, a master’s degree is vital for advanced practice nurses. Additionally, there are possibilities to take this position for newly graduated nurses to raise a professional degree and become higher-level specialists.

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Fougère, B., Lagourdette, C., Abele, P., Resnick, B., Rantz, M., Kam Yuk Lai, C., Chen, Q., Moyle, W., Vellas, B., & Morley, J. E. (2018). Involvement of advanced practice nurse in the management of geriatric conditions: Examples from different countries. The Journal of Nutrition, Health & Aging, 22(4), 463–470.

Htay, M., & Whitehead, D. (2021). The effectiveness of the role of advanced nurse practitioners compared to physician-led or usual care: A systematic review. International Journal of Nursing Studies Advances, 3, 100034.

Institute of Medicine (US) Committee on the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Initiative on the Future of Nursing, at the Institute of Medicine. (2011). The future of nursing: Leading change, advancing health. National Academies Press.

Miranda Neto, M.V., Rewa, T., Leonello, V.M., & Oliveira, M.A. (2018). Advanced practice nursing: A possibility for primary health care? Revista Brasileira de Enfermagem, 71(1), 716-21.

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