Nursing Leadership

Nursing Leadership 30(4) December 2017 : 26-38.doi:10.12927/cjnl.2017.25451
Special Focus on Nurse Practitioners in Long-Term Care

The Role of Nurse Practitioners in Long-Term Care Settings in Newfoundland and Labrador

Maria Mathews, Dana Ryan and Melissa Power

Abstract

Using a cross-sectional survey of managers, we examined the role of nurse practitioners (NPs) in long-term care (LTC) facilities in Newfoundland and Labrador. We compared facilities with no regular primary care provider, with only family physicians (FPs) and with both FPs and NPs. A total of 91 of 127 (71.0%) facilities completed the survey; 19 (21.3%) facilities had no primary care provider, 42 (47.2%) had FPs only and 28 (31.5%) had both FPs and NPs. NPs and FPs provide a similar range of services in LTC. On a five-point Likert scale, facilities with no primary care provider were more likely to rate continuity of care lower (2.59; p < 0.001) than either facilities with FPs (3.85) or facilities with FPs and NPs (3.78). All facilities agreed with the statement that increased availability of other health professionals (4.64) and using NPs (4.47) would improve care. NPs were perceived to reduce the need for hospital admissions and emergency room visits. There is support among LTC administrators for incorporating NPs in LTC, including among administrators whose facilities did not have an NP.

 

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