One of the advanced nursing roles available is a family nurse practitioner (FNP). These clinical specialists provide primary health services to people from all age groups from infants to the elderly (Nurse.org, 2020). As a primary care provider, the FNP interacts with patients directly, therefore, directly contributing to increased patient outcomes by participating in the diagnosis and treatment processes.
For instance, in a retrospective chart review study by Melaku-Abbera & Smith (2017), individualized intervention in type 2 diabetes mellitus patients delivered by FNPs was shown to reduce diabetes complications in patients. This effect was achieved by providing improved and personalized treatment plans, and teaching the patients skills necessary to alter their lifestyle to better manage their condition (Melaku-Abbera & Smith, 2017). These findings are corroborated by a time-series design study by Axman, et al. (2019), in which FNP students provided additional care to medically underserved people in San Diego County. Compared to other advanced nurse practitioners (ANP), an FNP can directly improve the outcomes for both pediatric and geriatric patients, working with people from different age groups.
An advance nursing practice concept embodied by the FNP is that of an expert practitioner and researcher. As an FNP’s contact with a single patient can span the majority of his or her lifespan from birth into advanced age, so should the nurse’s understanding of long-term conditions. This means that an FNP must be aware of such conditions’ development and effects over a person’s life, as well as the means of its control and treatment at different stages of one’s life. Furthermore, in providing care to related patients, the knowledge of conditions that may be hereditary and the specifics of managing and treating such conditions is also crucial.
Finally, a significant amount of research is required as the current medical knowledge of a condition and its treatment can change significantly over the long term. This necessitates constant observation and research of relevant literature and materials to ensure the best possible standard of care to one’s patients and guarantee timely and smooth transition to new treatment methods. Because of this, the success of an FNP requires exceptional expertise in both practice and research.
Axman, L., Boren, D., Andera, S., & Baker, M. (2019). Advanced nursing education family nurse practitioner students improve health outcomes for the medically underserved at nurse managed student run free clinics. International Journal of Nursing and Health Care Research.
Melaku-Abbera, H., & Smith, D. W. (2017). Evaluation of a family nurse practitioner-led individualized diabetes care model in a primary care. The Journal for Nurse Practitioners, 13(3), e143-e146. Web.
Nurse. (2020). Family nurse practitioner. Web.