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Why You Should Choose A Career in Advance Nursing Practice – Five Intelligent Reasons, A Brief Analysis; The Hurdles Awaiting
The advanced nurse practitioner role should be re-examined to ensure it advances nursing skills rather than plugging gaps created by a shortage of doctors -Rolfe G. Nursing Times.
Advance Practice Nursing – Extending Hands, Reaching Out
Advanced Practice Registered Nurses are highly qualified registered nurses who have through academic qualifications and clinical exposure/experience attained a degree of proficiency that enables them to provide specialised care specific to a particular population (Adult, Children, Mental Health, etc).
The opportunity of reaching more people with health care through advanced skills should be one reason why any registered nurse should seek to attain professional levels where they are capable of providing health care services at an advanced level.
The demand for specialised care is on the increase, with more of the population growing older, more births and an increased incidence in the occurrence of certain disease conditions that require skilled care, like cardiovascular diseases which are the number one causes of death worldwide.
With the burden on the Physicians growing steadily, the demand for primary health care is on the increase and they are very few Physicians available to meet this ever-growing need, this may be due to the fact that more Physicians are less interested in primary health care and are now more focused on specialised areas of medicine, this is where a role of advanced practice nursing comes into play; but not and should not be regarded as a primary role.
Advanced practice nurses are well equipped to provide necessary medical interventions, pending when the attention of a Physician or more detailed clinical intervention is available.
This special role of the advanced practice nurse if encouraged (especially in developing countries) will reduce morbidity and mortality in remote areas where the attention of an experienced Physician can not be easily and immediately secured.
The Current Trend
It is amazing how much nursing has changed and is changing. In developed countries, we now have doctorate – prepared registered nurses who are completely involved with patient care, though this development has created certain professional issues i.e Physicians complaining about the title of ‘Dr’ been carried by a “Registered Nurse’, and the need for patients and client’s to know if the Registered Nurse is a Doctor (Physician). These are matters that require mature dialogue and understanding.
Registered Nurses are now taking over more advanced roles, earning the professional rights to practice with more autonomy, though with marked scopes & well-defined boundaries.
The young generation of registered nurses is encouraged to make it a priority to make sure that they keep climbing the ladder of professional development, aiming for the very peak, having it in mind, that the prime reason for their development is first for humanity’s sake, the profession and personal development. It may not be easy climbing, but it’s worth it. The profession needs an army of confident nurses who are ready! Ready to give their all, to do what it takes!
Hurdles To Cross?
Oh yes, there are quite a good number of hurdles that we must fully understand and above all learn from, because the accurate understanding of these hurdles will go a long way in adding to our knowledge in the process/journey of development.
• The first hurdle that we can obviously see, is in the area of training. Registered Nurses are trained using concepts from a Nursing Model, while these advance roles warrants Registered Nurses to face situations on the field that are best tackled using a Medical Model. So, in the offing, I believe we should be able to integrate more ideas from the Medical Model to help better prepare Register Nurses to face the challenges that they will encounter on the field of practice.
• Another hidden hurdle which we may not be able to detect now is the deviation from Core Nursing, which is patient-centred as opposed to medical practice which focuses more on disease processes/pathology. Like I mentioned in the point above, there should be an intelligent and research-proven model that tries to combine the Nursing & Medical model while preserving the essence of what nursing really is.
• The modelling of advanced practice nursing roles to supplement for Physician shortages and combat increase in health care is not the primary goal of advance practice nursing but is a secondary goal, the primary reason is etched deep in the desire to advance nursing practice, improve and develop the profession.
• Perceived rivalry. Physicians are now beginning to be protective of the medical domain, viewing advance practice nursing as a scheme to replace, which should not be. It is paramount that we create an atmosphere of mutual agreement and unity instead of one froth with animosity, disunity and professional battles, which will be of no good to us or our patients.
• We must be wary and cautious as to how to advance practice nurses are trained. Detailed attention must be given to how the leadership structures are built so that these advance registered nurses do not begin to see themselves as Physicians or replacing the Physician, which is a faulty notion, they must be given proper orientations, ideas that are carefully laid on the solid foundation of professional development, leadership and true mentorship. We are building a generation of new nurses, they must know their identity, they must know who they are.
Five Reasons Why
• You will enjoy nursing more on an advanced level, simply because you will develop a deeper understanding of all that is been done for the patient as you advance your nursing skills.
• You will come to appreciate the profession more because you will discover that nurses can actually do much more.
• More opportunities abound in the advanced levels. More complex problems to solve, giving you the opportunity to make great contributions to the world of Nursing & Medicine.
• You are able to put your critical thinking and problem-solving skills to better use when you are an advance practice registered nurse.
• Better job opportunities. A better salary actually awaits you if you embrace the prospect of becoming an advance practice registered nurse.
These are not exhaustive of the ideas that decorate this theme, there are still a good number of writings by more exposed and experienced professionals, that discuss it deeper with more details. In the next part of this article, I will write more and I will also include recommended reads.
Yes! You have read it all, I thank you for reading this piece to the end, it means you love good information. I would like to know your thoughts, send me a mail or follow me on twitter, we have a whole lot to learn together.
• Rolfe G (2014) Advanced nursing practice 1: understanding advanced nursing practice. Nursing Times; 110: 27, 20-23.