- On 27/10/2016
Nurses are an invaluable component of the primary health workforce. They are core members of the practice team often providing leadership and contributing greatly to quality care and improved patient outcomes.
As in any business it is crucial that your employees are “working at the top of their licence”. What does this mean for nurses in general practice?
It means that your registered nurses should be engaged in high level patient care activities that not only bring them professional satisfaction but ensure that you receive a return on your workforce dollar.
A highly functioning practice nurse will engage in the following roles in your practice:
- Clinical care: Clinical procedures and wound management can relieve burden on a doctor’s time allowing them to consult with a greater number of patients.
- Clinical coordination: Managing recall and reminder systems and adopting population health approaches will contribute to practice risk management programs and generate return visits ensuring the delivery of comprehensive care and improving outcomes for chronic disease.
- Practice administration: Quality and Accreditation support.
- Integration and Education: Liaison with other providers and patient advocacy will result in enhanced consumer satisfaction.
The practice nurse role can be diverse and will be influenced by your practice population and location, the nurses’ qualifications, and your practice structure.
It is imperative that you create an efficient practice structure that supports a quality service and maintains practice viability and sustainability by developing job roles for nurses that are appropriate for the ratio of GPs and patients, and that you develop appropriate practice nurse roles and responsibilities.
Traditional task-oriented activities such as stock rotation, data collection and cleansing, sterilisation and so on should be conducted by less skilled and therefore less costly personnel.
Learn to utilise your workforce
Your workforce is the lifeblood of your practice. Even if you’re a small practice, it’s imporant to know how to make the most of your nurses, practice staff and allied health professionals. This can make your practice more productive and provide faster, quality care to your patients. Check your practice now: