Nurse practitioners, or NPs, are medical professionals who can provide advanced medical care to patients. Doctors should keep some facts about nurse practitioners in mind to ensure that patients are getting the best possible care.
Advanced Practice Nursing
Although a nurse practitioner is able to provide more advanced care and treatment for patients in a medical setting, they are educated using a nursing model. A nurse practitioner must meet licensure standards and credentialing requirements to practice in a medical setting. They have a doctoral level education and have shown that they are competent.
The nursing model requires a high level of skill and competency before a nurse can move forward in his or her education and career. All nurse practitioners meet or exceed the competency standards.
A nurse practitioner is fully qualified to evaluate, diagnose and treat patients in a medical setting. They can prescribe medication when it is appropriate based on the situation and the needs of the patient.
Since NPs often take a holistic approach to medicine, a diagnosis does not necessarily mean that a prescription is always appropriate. Health recommendations and suggestions are just as important as the traditional treatments that are prescribed to a patient.
NPs Want to be NPs
The decision to obtain a higher education in nursing is a personal choice and does not reflect any goals of becoming a medical doctor. A nurse practitioner makes an active choice regarding education and his or her future career path.
Many NPs Provide Care in Underserved Areas
Nurse practitioners often work in primary care and provide medical services to areas that are underserved. Although a nurse practitioner does have the option to obtain a specialized education, many decide to pursue primary care, particularly family health or adult care. Furthermore, a nurse practitioner often works in rural or frontier locations, where there may be a limited number of medical professionals.
Positive Medical Experiences
After several years of research and observation, it has been shown that many patients have a positive experience when they work with a nurse practitioner. Patients may feel that a nurse practitioner is as skilled and competent as a physician. In some cases, an NP is considered better than a physician.
The growth of visits to nurse practitioners throughout the United States suggests that many patients are satisfied with the services that they are offered, particularly when it relates to the holistic approaches to healing that are made available.
Respect is Not Regulated
Nurse practitioners and physicians do not need regulations to get along well in a medical setting. Generally, nurse practitioners respect physicians and strive to collaborate with other medical professionals to provide the best care for every patient.
A nurse practitioner is a professional in the medical field who is highly educated, competent and capable of handling the needs of patients. As the healthcare industry grows, it is important for physicians to recognize the role of a nurse practitioner when it relates to patient health.
Last Updated on July 14, 2014