Role of Nurse Practitioner while caring for Patients with Chronic Illness

A nurse practitioner is a specialized advanced practice registered nurse (Norful, de Jacq Carlino, & Poghosyan, 2018). These nurses are relatively more learned and experienced than the normal nurses. They are equipped with better skills, knowledge, mental strength and expertise that allow them to offer better services to patients with chronic illnesses. They teach patients about their conditions, especially those that require long-term treatment and constant check-ups. This ensures that the disease does not progress to become life-threatening. They have a role in provision of and leadership of advanced clinical care for patients that are chronically ill.

Read also National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties (NONPF) Competencies

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Nurse practitioners perform physical exams and patient observations, record patients’ medical histories and symptoms, create patient care plans and contribute to the existing ones (Torrens, Campbell, Hoskins, Strachan, Wells, Cunningham, & Maxwell, 2020). They also order, administer, and analyze diagnostic tests. In chronic illnesses, they diagnose health issues, detect changes in the patients’ health and thus modify treatment plans as needed. They work in collaboration with other healthcare professions to provide better outcomes and minimize errors in treatment. NPs have a role in training patients and their families on how to manage and prevent illnesses and injury (Norful, de Jacq Carlino, & Poghosyan, 2018). They are responsible for introducing habits for health promotion.

Read also Differences between a Primary Care Nurse Practitioner and an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

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A good nurse practitioner needs to be attentive when assessing a patient’s condition and go out of their way to ensure that the patient’s needs are met. They take responsibility of their patients, are competent, responsive to the patient, empathic and show compassion (Torrens, Campbell, Hoskins, Strachan, Wells, Cunningham, & Maxwell, 2020). They treat each case differently and offer individualized and specialized healthcare. However, the work can be physically and emotionally draining especially when patients do not follow sound medical guidance. On the upside, nurse practitioners have greater control over their professional practice and patient outcomes.

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