26 September 2023

Nurse Practitioners get a shot in the arm

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The position of ‘Nurse Practitioner’ in the ACT Health system is to become formal under a proposed amendment to the Territory’s Health Act.

Minister for Health, Rachel Stephen-Smith said the amendment would broaden the workforce opportunities for nurse practitioners in the public and private, health and aged care sectors.

“This is an important amendment because it will result in a nurse practitioner being treated equally to a doctor, dentist or eligible midwife in terms of being able to be reviewed and credentialed for clinical privileges,” Ms Stephen-Smith said.

“The amendment will also reduce regulatory and administrative duplication in relation to the governance of nurse practitioners in the ACT,” she said.

“Nurse practitioners are registered nurses with a Masters Qualification, and extensive experience in advanced clinical roles, and thereby have an important and pivotal role in our health care system.”

She said the Territory had 48 nurse practitioners who were contributing greatly through the network of nurse-led Walk-in Centres across Canberra.

“These Centres are an important part of the suite of free health care services across the ACT,” she said.

“Nurse practitioners are making a huge difference to our health care system, working in collaboration with other health professionals, including medical practitioners, pharmacists, physiotherapists and occupational therapists to provide optimal care to the Canberra community,” Ms Stephen-Smith said.

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