- 06 July 2017
- 3 min read
Working as an Advanced Nurse Practitioner
What does it really take to gain a job as an Advanced Nurse Practitioner?
For 15 years, I was a Practice Nurse based in 3 practices; 1 rural, 1 semi-rural and one town centre.
I loved my job but felt I could do more.
When visiting a local walk-in centre with my daughter for an ECG, the nurse practitioner couldn’t get the machine to work. When I volunteered to help, he asked if I was looking for a job!
This was the change I needed.
I contacted the service manager who was recruiting for Nurse Practitioners. I didn’t have the correct skill set at the time, but I did have a wealth of experience.
She offered me a developing role with the opportunity to attend University to gain skills in history taking, consultation skills in minor illness and injury and a module on professional judgement.
I felt wrapped in a cocoon of enthusiasm, and this fuelled my need for successful learning.
On completion of this course, my keenness took me to an Independent Prescribing course which enabled me to complete my consultations autonomously.
It was thrilling, challenging and occasionally scary.
Three years later I became the Lead Nurse for the same walk-in centre, helping to develop others through education and support.
It was now, I began wondering about my future in the NHS.
I completed the Leadership Academy course for new leaders in the NHS, and forged many contacts through new skills, and developed a leap in confidence.
Looking for balance in my life, I opted for a Nurse Practitioner Job in general practice. My first role was unsatisfactory to me, as there was a huge staff turnover which left the nursing team unsupported.
My second role was in a very pleasant rural practice, but with no plans for future development.
Then came my chance. I applied to a forward-thinking town centre practice with good GP support, very open to change and new development.
The Practice Manager was fluid in his thinking, and liked instant messages and emails with suggestions for change which could benefit the Practice.
My new role is Advanced Nurse Practitioner, responsible to the urgent care needs of the practice. Through this role I can autonomously assess, diagnose, treat or admit patients who need to be seen urgently.
I can demonstrate Locum GP reductions for the practice, and decreased workload for the partners who employ me. T
his is my challenge, and I plan to enjoy it!
The Role of the Nurse Practitioner in General Practice
● Working to timed appointments to meet the needs of urgent care for patients within own knowledge and skills framework
● Improve patient access Improve patient satisfaction
● Decrease GP workload
● Decrease need for locum GPs
● Maintain own and team members CPD through learning and development
● Use audit and feedback for reflective, evidence based practice
● Highly motivated autonomous professional Practitioner
● Work within the NMC Code of Practice
● Flexible and adaptable team player
● Caring and compassionate person
● Minimum of five years’ experience in General Practice
● RCN member plus MDU membership
● Leadership and Management skills
● Registered Nurse
● Degree level training in Minor Illness/Injuries
● Non-medical Prescribing Qualification