Developing an advanced nurse practitioner service in emergency care: attitudes of nurses and doctors

Miriam Griffin, Vidar Melby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

63 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Aim This paper reports a study to determine the attitudes of nurses, doctors and general medical practitioners towards the development of an advanced nurse practitioner service within an emergency department. Background The role of advanced nurse practitioner in emergency care has emerged in a number of countries, and has brought with it confusion about titles, role boundaries, clinical accountability and educational requirements. Initially, the role resulted from a need for healthcare professionals to provide a service to the increased numbers of patients presenting to hospital with less urgent problems. Since then, the service has evolved to one where nurse practitioners provide high-quality and cost-effective care to persons who seek help for non-urgent, urgent or emergent conditions in a variety of emergency care settings. However, little research could be identified on the attitudes of relevant nursing and medical staff towards the development of this role. Method A questionnaire survey was carried out, and a 29-item Likert rating scale was developed to measure attitudes. Along with some demographic variables, two open-ended questions were added to allow respondents to elaborate on what they perceived as benefits and difficulties associated with an advanced nurse practitioner service. All general practitioners, emergency nurses and emergency doctors in one health board in the Republic of Ireland were targeted, and 25 emergency nurses, 13 emergency doctors and 69 general practitioners were approached to take part. Data were collected in February 2004. Findings An overall response rate of 74.8% was achieved. All respondents were positive towards the development of an advanced nurse practitioner service, with general practitioners being less positive. The principal differences appeared between general practitioners and hospital emergency care staff. Conclusion There is a need for a multidisciplinary approach to the planning of advanced nurse practitioner services. To achieve multiprofessional acceptance, an accredited and standardized education programme is required, and this must address existing role boundaries.
LanguageEnglish
Pages292-301
JournalJournal of Advanced Nursing
Volume56
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2006

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Nurse Practitioners
Emergency Medical Services
General Practitioners
Nurses
Emergencies
Staff Development
Nursing Staff
Medical Staff
Social Responsibility
Ireland
General Hospitals
Hospital Emergency Service
Demography
Delivery of Health Care
Education
Costs and Cost Analysis
Health
Research
Surveys and Questionnaires

Cite this

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abstract = "Aim This paper reports a study to determine the attitudes of nurses, doctors and general medical practitioners towards the development of an advanced nurse practitioner service within an emergency department. Background The role of advanced nurse practitioner in emergency care has emerged in a number of countries, and has brought with it confusion about titles, role boundaries, clinical accountability and educational requirements. Initially, the role resulted from a need for healthcare professionals to provide a service to the increased numbers of patients presenting to hospital with less urgent problems. Since then, the service has evolved to one where nurse practitioners provide high-quality and cost-effective care to persons who seek help for non-urgent, urgent or emergent conditions in a variety of emergency care settings. However, little research could be identified on the attitudes of relevant nursing and medical staff towards the development of this role. Method A questionnaire survey was carried out, and a 29-item Likert rating scale was developed to measure attitudes. Along with some demographic variables, two open-ended questions were added to allow respondents to elaborate on what they perceived as benefits and difficulties associated with an advanced nurse practitioner service. All general practitioners, emergency nurses and emergency doctors in one health board in the Republic of Ireland were targeted, and 25 emergency nurses, 13 emergency doctors and 69 general practitioners were approached to take part. Data were collected in February 2004. Findings An overall response rate of 74.8{\%} was achieved. All respondents were positive towards the development of an advanced nurse practitioner service, with general practitioners being less positive. The principal differences appeared between general practitioners and hospital emergency care staff. Conclusion There is a need for a multidisciplinary approach to the planning of advanced nurse practitioner services. To achieve multiprofessional acceptance, an accredited and standardized education programme is required, and this must address existing role boundaries.",
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Developing an advanced nurse practitioner service in emergency care: attitudes of nurses and doctors. / Griffin, Miriam; Melby, Vidar.

In: Journal of Advanced Nursing, Vol. 56, No. 3, 11.2006, p. 292-301.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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