What Is APRN? Types and Role of Advanced Practice Registered Nurses

What Is APRN? Types and Role of Advanced Practice Registered Nurses
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Nursing has arguably become the most integral component of the health sector. With so many technological advancements, nurses adapt and change their traditional practices to more advanced and technical roles.

The healthcare sector is exceptionally vast. It has categorized the roles of individual practitioners and further classified them into their fields of specialization.

Nursing is one such vast field. Nurses are balancing multiple responsibilities at one time, from chartering patients to categorizing data. Nurses are undoubtedly the most crucial task force of a functioning hospital. Their strong work ethic and commitment to their job keep the environment calm and make the process of managing the hospital's facilities smoother.

Without nurses, a functioning hospital's entire structure would collapse, and doctors' workload would be too much to bear. Their division of labor with doctors makes it easy for them to treat patients and take care of their wellbeing without burdening one sector with immense pressure.

One such nurse is the advanced practice registered nurse (APRN).

What Is APRN?

APRN is a broad definition of nurses, including nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, nurse midwives, and nurse anesthetists; these collectively make up the most crucial nurses in a hospital. APRN nurses are mostly primary care providers and render their services in preventative healthcare to the public.

These nurses are responsible for diagnosing illnesses, talking to the public about different health issues, helping alleviate the symptoms of chronic diseases. And also continually educating themselves in new technological methods and other advancements relevant to their field. When it comes to their education, most APRNs hold a minimum of a master's degree with a nursing background, which is essential for all Registered Nurses (RNs).

Their skills are indispensable, and they are juggling many roles at one time. Even within APRNs, there are APRNs types; this makes it easier to categorize their tasks and perform the relevant duties.

Types and Roles of APRN

As they have pervasive clinical training and an intensive educational background, many APRNs are qualified to see patients without doctors. They may even order diagnostic testing and take critical medical decisions. It is why they have a wide variety of roles. Such as:

1. Nurse Practitioner

These nurses are professionals who engage with patients in outpatient settings. They're the nurses who administer routine check-ups and are responsible for your preventative care. Patients are assigned an NP as their primary health care provider. NPS can also run several diagnostic medical tests and incorporate medical tests as part of your preventative health care. If you want to become a nurse practitioner, you should know what nurse practitioner requirements are? Nurses entering this field must complete at least a postgraduate degree, specialization area, and pass a national certification or licensing exam in their specialty.

2. Certified Nurse-Midwives

Midwives are responsible for providing and caring for expecting mothers throughout their pregnancy with optimal prenatal care. Apart from caring for the baby and the mother's wellbeing, these nurses are also responsible for delivering babies. They're usually working in team settings alongside physicians or by having a team entirely of midwives to care for the mother while safely delivering the baby.

3. Nurse Anesthetists

These nurses are found in surgical theatres and provide intensive patient care during the surgery. They administer strong painkillers and put patients under anesthesia during surgery, and are responsible for monitoring their vital signs during a surgical operation. They also provide postoperative care to the patient as well.

4. Clinical Nurse Specialists

These nurses have multiple roles and many responsibilities of a medical care team; it includes making rounds and visiting patients, and making diagnostic and medical decisions. Clinical nurse specialists can also be general care nurse practitioners and provide a large medical care scale. They may even specialize in providing specialized care.

Some clinical nurses see patients after their surgeries and follow up with patients after being discharged from the hospital following their surgery. These nurses are also responsible for guiding a patient in what to expect regarding the surgery, how to manage symptoms, what to expect post-surgery, help you evaluate postoperative complications and teaching home care, and arrange postoperative medication rehabilitation.

These nurses are involved in multidisciplinary roles of a hospital, and a health care system is incomplete without them. Their continued advancement in their field makes them a valuable asset as technological advancements mean more digitization and operating machine equipment and softwares previously unknown. Their assistance is valuable to doctors and the administration collectively.

Wrap Up

Nurses have left their mark in the healthcare sector; they are enthusiastic and involved with every minute detail that pertains to patient health care and wellbeing. They are now using technology to streamline their work and keep it flowing.

APRN arguably makes up the most critical workforce of the nursing unit. They're involved in many jobs centered around patient care and wellbeing and sensitive responsibilities such as delivering babies and caring for mothers' postnatal and prenatal care. Their knowledge, skills, and training are essential for a hospital and the patients as their wellbeing are entirely in their hands.

There are four types of APRNs, and each plays a pivotal role in their field. By becoming a nurse, you're contributing your time and efforts in collaborating with a team to work towards a better patient health care system.

As technology is advancing and there are new machinery and equipment on the horizon, APRN is needed now more than ever. The slope of advancement will now increase from here on out, and traditional methods are getting outdated. So confidently join the workforce and reshape not just the lives of patients but yours too by allowing yourself to grow and flourish in your field. So begin your journey today and become part of a strong team.