Barrier to NP practice removed.
Subject: Nurse practitioners (Compensation and benefits)
Employee benefits (Laws, regulations and rules)
Pub Date: 11/01/2010
Publication: Name: Kai Tiaki: Nursing New Zealand Publisher: New Zealand Nurses' Organisation Audience: Trade Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Health; Health care industry Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2010 New Zealand Nurses' Organisation ISSN: 1173-2032
Issue: Date: Nov, 2010 Source Volume: 16 Source Issue: 10
Topic: Event Code: 280 Personnel administration; 930 Government regulation; 940 Government regulation (cont); 980 Legal issues & crime Advertising Code: 94 Legal/Government Regulation Computer Subject: Government regulation; Employee benefits
Geographic: Geographic Scope: New Zealand Geographic Code: 8NEWZ New Zealand
Accession Number: 243451573
Full Text: Nurse practitioners (NPs) are now able to complete medical certificates for sickness beneficiaries. The Ministry of Social Development recently included NPs among the health practitioners able to complete medical certificates for sickness benefit applications and renewals. "Nurse practitioners are ideally suited to assess a person's capacity to work and any changes in their capacity to work because they practise in an holistic way and consider all the factors that can affect a person's ability to work," said chair of the Nurse Practitioners' Advisory Committee--New Zealand (NPAC-NZ), Helen Snell.

Snell, who is NZNO's representative on NPAC-NZ, said the committee, along with other professional nursing organisatons, had been lobbying for years for the removal of the many legislative barriers which prevented NPs working to the full extent of their scope of practice. They had also been supported by nursing advisers in the Ministry of Health. "It is very encouraging that one of these legislative barriers has been removed. We look forward to the others being dismantled sooner rather than later," Snell said.

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NP training programme

NPAC-NZ has developed a draft paper outlining an NP training programme, which is now out for consultation. Snell said there were 80 NPs in the country, few given the size of the profession. "The committee believes part of the reason for this is the absence of a format NP training programme where the nurse completes his/her advanced practice training in an environment that offers adequate opportunities to apply and practise advanced knowledge and skills, with the appropriate level of clinical oversight."

The draft training programme is focused on providing a "robust, structured and clinically focused training programme" for nurses on the NP pathway, linking with the required academic requirements. In the future it is envisaged that sites will be credentialed to deliver such a programme.

Feedback on the consultation paper can be given at a new website, established specifically for NPAC-NZ: www.nursepractitioner.org.nz.
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