My Models of Transition in Nursing
Blais and Hayes (2015) provide two models that may be utilized to describe the transition process for a registered nurse who has decided to continue her studies. When describing my transition from the nursing practice back to academia, it might be possible to state that currently, I see myself approximately at the end of the stage which is labeled “neutral zone” according to the Bridges’ model; when speaking about Spencer & Adams’ stages, I can say that I am testing the limits of my new role.
Indeed, I have already passed the stages at which an individual loses their initial strong positive emotions about the beginning of new studies, and attempts to deal with numerous issues (in my case, these were the necessity to combine the hard work as an RN in a pediatric oncology department and a large amount of new information and knowledge that I am to learn, as well as the need to have at least some time for my family), which involves serious stress and an overwhelming number of responsibilities. I have become accustomed to my new way of life, and it is much less challenging to me now. Now I am considering what I could do next to maximize the benefits of my studies.
My Roles in the Nursing Profession
Working in a pediatric oncology department is hard not only because of the large amount of work and care that needs to be provided for children but also because that oncologic diseases often lead to highly adverse patient outcomes, which, being combined with the strong compassion that one often feels towards sick children, leads to high rates of stress and burnout among pediatric oncology health care providers, nurses in particular (Hecktman, 2012).
As a pediatric oncology RN, I am exposed to a significant level of compassion-associated stress when the children that I care for suffer or die because of their condition; this is combined with the strain originating from the necessity to do large amounts of work. However, I have learned to cope with the sense of grief related to the loss of young people I know, and I attempt to capitalize on the feeling of joy I experience when one of my patients is successfully cured.
It was extremely difficult to transition to my new role as a student combined with the role of an RN, but I kept telling myself that a BSN will allow me to better alleviate the suffering of my patients and assist them in their need, perhaps even develop new methods to do so. Besides, the fact that studying is very interesting to me has also helped me considerably, for it makes learning pleasant and therefore much easier.
Comparison of the Family Nurse Practitioner and Family Practice Medical Doctor
To become a certified family nurse practitioner (FNP), one needs to “hold a current, active RN license in a state or territory of the United States or hold the professional, legally recognized equivalent in another country,” and to have a “master’s, postgraduate, or doctoral degree from a family nurse practitioner program” (ANCC, n.d., para. 1-4); there are also requirements related to the number of hours and the content of courses taken. The certification is obtained via the American Nurses Credentialing Center. FNPs deliver holistic care to families, and focus on illness prevention and health promotion; they are allowed to provide general care, prescribe drugs, diagnose diseases, and order/interpret tests.
In contrast, certification as a family practice medical doctor (FPMD) requires having the degree of M.D. or D.O., a 3-year or 4-year family medicine residency in the U.S., and a full, unrestricted, and valid licensure to practice medicine in the U.S. (ABFM, n.d.). Certification can be obtained from the American Board of Family Medicine or the American Osteopathic Board of Family Physicians (ABFM, n.d.; AOBFP, n.d.). Overall, a physician’s focus is on the study of disease, whereas a nurse concentrates on delivering care. A physician, however, has a more extensive education. FPMDs provide medical attention to families but are not limited by certain constraints and regulations that restrict the scope of an FNP’s activity.
ABFM. (n.d.). Certification MC-FP exam. Web.
ANCC. (n.d.). Family nurse practitioner certification eligibility criteria. Web.
AOBFP. (n.d.). Board eligibility–certification exams. Web.
Blais, K. K., & Hayes, J. S. (2015). Professional nursing practice: Concepts and perspectives (7th ed.). New York, NY: Pearson.
Hecktman, H. M. (2012). Stress in pediatric oncology nurses. Journal of Pediatric Oncology Nursing, 29(6), 356-361. Web.