Clinical Neurosciences in the News
Acute Care Neurosurgery Nurse Practitioners Help to Coordinate Patient Care
|Bridging the communication and care gap between the role of nurses and physicians, a nurse practitioner (NP) wears many hats. Ron Prince, a current neurosurgery NP at the Foothills Medical Centre (FMC), was part of the second class to graduate from the NP program in 2002. “We become involved with the patient from the moment they enter emergency. Our main role is to co-ordinate the care of patients,” he says.The University of Calgary started offering the Acute Care NP program in September 2001.
There are two streams within the program; students may take the NP program concurrently with a master’s of nursing (MN) degree or there is a post-master’s certificate route available to registered nurses with an MN degree. The purpose of the acute care nurse practitioner is to provide advanced nursing care, across the continuum of care, to patients who are acutely and critically ill. NPs work with neurosurgeons to diagnose medical conditions and to help develop treatments. Complex acutely ill patients are assessed through health history, physical and mental status examination and health risk appraisal.