The Role of the Advanced Practice Nurse in a Changing Health Care Environment

The Role of the Advanced Practice Nurse in a Changing Health Care Environment

Advanced Practice Nurses have successfully gone through graduate level education and attained the clinical skills and knowledge to provide direct care to patients.  Such nurses include certified nurse midwives, certifies nurse anesthetist, Nurse Practitioners, and clinical nurse specialists. Currently, the role of an advanced nurse practitioner, for example, a family nurse practitioner has evolved to provide high quality and reasonable cost care. The nurses are expected to practice this to the fullest extent of their skills and knowledge (Hinch, Murphy & Lauer, 2005). The Nurse Practitioner has become part of the constant change that has been created with the introduction of technology. Technological advancement in clinical nursing requires nurses to be sufficiently versed with scientific knowledge and skills to provide quality care. In response to the improvements, Nurse Practitioners are expected to go through relevant education and training to meet the demands of the growing technology in medical practice.

The changing environment in the healthcare environment has impacted access to physicians. It has been the Nurse Practitioners like Family Nurse Practitioners that have emerged as the primary healthcare providers within the environment of healthcare systems. For example, a Family Nurse Practitioner can provide quality care without the assistance of a health physician in a rural healthcare setting (Mac, 2007). In recent years, the role of nurses has changed in response to advances in technology, healthcare needs, and scientific knowledge. The patients have developed trust in the services provided by Nurse Practitioners which have remained high.

The Affordable Care Act has also emerged strongly to empower Nurse Practitioners. The Graduate Nurse Education (GNE) demonstration awards a lot of funding to the hospital systems to educate and train an increased number of NPs. The ACC has also increased funding for the NPs for National Health Services programs which provide incentives to clinicians who practice hardship areas (Wisur, Glasberg, Mäkelä & Fagerström, 2015). The funding is majorly aimed at improving the knowledge and skills of the NPs in their allocated areas so that an overall improvement in the quality of healthcare delivery is attained.


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