A Nurse Practitioner (NP) is a nurse with advanced university education who works both independently and in collaboration with other health professionals to provide patients and families with quality health care services. Ontario has more than 2,000 Nurse Practitioners who work in a diverse range of community and hospital settings across the province.
We asked a few members of the NP team at our Health Sciences Centre to share thoughts about their role and experience. This week, we’re featuring Jeff Yahn.
Nursing is a diverse and challenging profession with an abundance of opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives. Over the past 8 years I have had the privilege of practicing in a primary care setting and have garnered a knowledge base from which to form a clear understanding of the health care needs we are presently confronted with. The attractive qualities of the nursing profession are vast; therefore, the chance to expand my knowledge base in the healthcare field and give back to the community are the key points in why I furthered my education to become a nurse practitioner.
As a nurse practitioner in the internal medicine clinic I have the pleasure of servicing multiple programs. One of which is our Hospital’s TeleHomeCare heart failure program, which utilizes specialized remote monitoring technology and enables myself to manage and treat severe to very severe heart failure patients from the comfort of their own home. Furthermore, these patients are also engaged as partners in their own care plan and counseled to promote effective self-management strategies. I am also a part of our Anticoagulation Clinic, which services patients for all anticoagulation need such as post hospital thrombosis treatment and counseling, warfarin management and peri-operative/post-operative treatment plans.
The most challenging part of my role as a Nurse Practitioner is servicing complex heart failure and anticoagulation patients in a rural or remote setting.
The most rewarding aspect of my role in the internal medicine clinic is being accessible to my patients. I take pride in offering my patients quick, timely and knowledgeable answers to all their questions no matter what. Most patients and families’ biggest fear post hospital discharge is the unknown and when introduced to a service that is accessible with knowledgeable practitioners they find the transition into the community smooth and trouble free.
By becoming a nurse practitioner you are embarking on a career that will help restore, maintain and advance the health of individuals, groups and communities. You will collaborate with allied health professionals and form close relationships with physicians, specialists and patients. Furthermore, you will gain the added benefit of autonomy and independence in a vast array of practice opportunities. As a nurse practitioner I feel blessed to be given the opportunity to practice in an environment that allows me to make a difference in someone’s life. Patients love the fact that Nurse Practitioners are accessible, knowledgeable and able to provide them time to discuss issues with minimal constraints. I am proud to have embarked on a career and as a Nurse Practitioner and urge others to do the same.