What Does a Family Nurse Practitioner Do?

Interested in building a career in the healthcare field? You might consider becoming a family nurse practitioner.

Family nurse practitioners are also registered nurses. These medical professionals perform functions of primary and specialty health care providers supervised by doctors of medicine. The nurse practitioner works with patients closely to make a diagnosis of ailments, conduct basic examinations and prescribe medicines. These nurses are just like family doctors serving as health care providers and principal liaison with the medical system. Majority of hospitals, clinics and health care facilities have family nurse practitioners in their staff complement.

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Work Aspects and Scope of Responsibilities

One major facet of the job entails physical testing, well patient examinations, and treatment for primary health concerns. The nurse should foster a close relationship with patients and be around to provide support from birth through aging and demise. The family nurse practitioner job involves a major role in the monitoring and treatment of persistent disorders and disabilities aside from dealing with healthy patients. The consistency of care for patients with current medical issues is crucial. Hence, the family nurse practitioner is an important piece in the patient and care team.

The nurse practitioner is a registered nurse with advanced training. This medical professional is given authority by state governments to provide practically the same services performed by physicians but not including surgical operations. These consist of diagnosis and treatment of simple health disorders; conducting prenatal, well-child, and adult care examinations; detection and management of minor strains; application of sutures and splints; prescription of medicines; health promotion and disease prevention education for patients. The family nurse practitioner owns a long history of engaging patients in their care, helping them figure out their ailments and institute practical measures for personal wellness. In fact, the nurse practitioner can give out medications to include controlled substances.

Independence of Nurse Practitioners

The family nurse practitioner job promises a certain level of independence. There has been much debate in the past in various states to provide autonomy for nurses. The suggestion that nurses can do a lot of work without the supervision of doctors has been relatively controversial. Independent nursing practice has been the subject of these intense deliberations among state and federal lawmakers in view of the increasing demand for medical and nursing services. More and more citizens are requiring health care so family nurse practitioners will have more work to perform.

The escalating patient load plus the anticipated scarcity of primary care doctors has put the limelight on the capability of nurses and doctor’s assistants to fulfill primary care requirements.

Nurse practitioners maintain that while nurses cannot replace physicians, most of them have the competence to provide exceptional and cost-effective care for patients. Nurses are essential players and serve as a major component of the health care team either on a small or wider scale.

The regulatory environment of the state is slowly changing so that nurse practitioners are becoming empowered and obtain plenary powers. In other words, there are no rigid requirements in collaborating within a team setting. Doctors as well as nurses are part of the overall healthcare team. Besides, family nurse practitioners have the capability to approach patients with a proper understanding of the significance of mutual and family-centered care.