Future of NPs in Oz

  1. Hey all,
    I'm finishing my B Nurs in five weeks (gulp!), but I have a longstanding desire to be a nurse practitioner in paediatrics. I know the way we use our nurse practitioners is different to how the Americans use theirs.

    I've mentioned this desire to a couple of nurses. One (my clinical assessor) was wildly enthusiastic (although did try to persuade me to do medicine), and the other, a very experienced ICU CNS, was very opposed to the idea of NPs at all. It's such a young profession over here, and I can't seem to find a great deal of support for it.

    Since I have my head screwed on, and also because of the stipulations posed by the NSW NMB, I am going to have at LEAST five years' experience, possibly more like 10, before I become a NP.

    Does anyone have any opinions on how the NP role in Oz will be accepted in the future? Thanks.
  2. Visit bethem profile page

    About bethem

    Joined: Dec '05; Posts: 267; Likes: 47
    Specialty: Med onc, med, surg, now in ICU!


  3. by   gwenith
    Queensland health has just given funding for Cardiac failure NP's. I think there probably is a future anywhere that you can prove that case management keeps readmission level lower.
  4. by   augigi
    I agree, research consistently demonstrates better outcomes in terms of clinical state and economics when patients are managed by NPs. NPs have been established in the US for many years, so it will take time but I think it will get there.

    It's great that you're planning out your career path in advance, good luck!
  5. by   bethem
    Thanks for your support! I think NPs could be a useful addition to any ward, really. It'll be very interesting to see how it all develops as the role becomes more concrete - and we learn to argue better with the AMA!
  6. by   Michelle123
    I am only in my first year and I am thinking of what I will need to do to be a NP. (But I am also considering medicine shhhh) I think that there is going to be a lot of changes in the next 5 years and there will be a move toward NP's, we can't manage to get enough Docs in certain areas as it is, but nurses are more inclined to do that work and go to these places.
  7. by   vrhodes
    One of my lecturers used to say all the time 'when you are all nurse practitioners...'

    From what I have heard, there are not many wards just waiting for NP's, but have to be talked around to giving the NPs a trial, to see how they effect outcomes.

    there are so many specialties I am interested (Peds, NICU, midwifery etc.) that I dont think I will ever be able to make it to that level!
  8. by   Grace Oz
    As with anything new, it takes time for acceptance and adjustment. There was a time, many eons ago, where nurses did not participate in certain procedures, IV cannulation for example. Things change and the way healthcare is delivered is also changing. Set your sights on your goal and GOOD LUCK!
  9. by   talaxandra
    A friend of mine has just become an NP in oncology - the demand and recognition are slowly growing. Certainly by the time you (Bethem) have enough eperience to take on the role, NPs should have at least a firm toehold in the Australian health care system.

    How disappointing that some clinical nurses (like the one in ICU) still see intelligence, ambition and career planning as indicators for medicine rather than assets for nursing! I can (sort of) understand how laypeople conflate the to, but the roles and goals are so different that I don't understand nurses recommending a career switch based on these things.

    That isn't to say that I don't understand, or approve, of nurses deciding to undertake medicine, but those I've known who've made the switch have done so because they want that wholly different scope of practice.

    Off topic again! My point was supposed to be: if you're interested in a nurse practitioner role, I encourage you to go forth and pursue it! We need motivated, interested, enquiring minds in nursing
  10. by   augigi
    I agree, it's a pet hate when people are intelligent nurses that people say "why don't you do medicine?". Usually I just say "Er, because I don't want to be a doctor?"