Advanced Practice Nursing Role Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Advanced Nurse Practitioner

There are a number of differences explored by Hamric et al. (2013) throughout the chapter which helps differentiate the Advanced Nurse Practitioner from other nursing roles in healthcare. One that is important is the contrasts shown between the Advanced Practitioner and a nurse working in a certain field of specialization. Hamric et al. (2013) describes specialization as "the development of expanded knowledge and skills in a selected area within the discipline of nursing" (68). As such, nurses working in a specialized genre of the field have experience often specifically within that field, and lack the more generalized knowledge that comes from working within an Advanced Practice situation. Education within specialization does not always require a graduate program and can often be done by working specifically in the field of specialization. On the other hand, Advanced Practitioners must follow a broader, yet more intense level of study. APNs work towards graduate degrees that allow them a greater level of proficiency in a wider area of specialties. Thus, APNs are different from specialty nurses because "Advanced practice students acquire specialized knowledge and skills through study and supervision at the graduate level. APNs are trained to assess and react to patients more independently than specialized nurses. Additionally, a second difference discusses revolves around the notion of different roles within the larger field of Advanced Practice Nursing. The title does not mean that there is a single definition of the roles experienced by the APN. As such, Hamric et al. (2013) is right to show the clear differences between these roles. The roles of the APN differ dramatically depending on the environment in which he or she is practicing. When an individual is a clinical setting, some roles, like that of working in collaboration with patients or making innovative decisions in healthcare strategy differs from APNs working elsewhere, like in an academic setting where there is a greater importance placed on the leadership role to guide future nurses.

The text suggests that the direct care of an APN is distinguished by six characteristics: "use of holistic perspective, formation of therapeutic partnerships with patients, expert clinical performance, use of reflective practice, use of evidence to guide practice, and use of diverse approaches to health and illness management" (Hamric et al., 2013, 76). Out of these six core characteristics, two would be especially difficult to master. First, the formation of therapeutic partnerships would be especially difficult to develop based on the level of confidence one would have to convey messages to patients in a clear and logical manner. Working with patients is one of the most difficult things to do as any level of nurse. It requires a certain degree of not only clinical knowledge, but also people skills and charisma. Working with patients is necessary to build a report that would help facilitate the successful meeting of healthcare goals. Yet, although there is some level of academic training in this aspect, the bulk of learning comes from actually experiencing working with patients, which can take years to develop. Secondly, the use of reflective practice is also hard to develop. No matter how much academic training provides models for reflection, it is actually a very difficult task to conduct. It takes the knowledge of hindsight, and also the ability to see the areas needed for improvement and then make logical strategies to work on those areas. In many instances, it is always easier for someone else to point out areas for improvement. Self-reflection is much deeper and takes a lot of experience to fine tune.

There are a number of clear and direct statements that are incredibly accurate within the texts. For example, one chapter suggests that "Leadership is not optional in APN practice, it is a requirement" (Hamric et al., 2013, 92). This is absolutely true. APNs have to take their advanced knowledge and experience in order to delegate tasks to get the most optimum conditions within the healthcare environment. Thus, they must utilize strong leadership in order to facilitate team work and communication within the group of nurses and other healthcare workers in order to succeed in meeting healthcare goals. Without leadership, APNs are unable to allow their own heightened experience and knowledge direct healthcare strategies to the most…

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