Aspects of Family Nurse Practitioner as a Nursing Specialty

Aspects of Family Nurse Practitioner as a Nursing Specialty

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Aspects of Family Nurse Practitioner as a Nursing Specialty

Definition, Purpose, and Rationale

A family nurse practitioner is an advanced registered nurse practice with advanced training and education to practice within primary care settings. Family nurse practitioners are important to the healthcare landscape as they provide necessary care services and wellness guidance to patients that require them. Family nurse practitioners assist in the management of patient caseloads in clinics, hospitals and medical professionals. They work alongside specialists and physicians in taking care of the injured, sick, and healthy patients. Currently, the practice of family nurse practitioners is the broadest scope of the nursing profession. Family nurse practitioners have training in providing care to patients ranging from 100-year-olds to newborns. This means that family nurse practitioners can diagnose, treat, and assess patients in the said range for nearly any malady that passes through the door. The place of a family nurse practitioner is becoming increasingly significant as patients continue to struggle to access care in some parts of the United States. The rationale for selecting this nursing practice is that family nurse practitioner is that it has the broadest scope. Additionally, professionals tend to be passionate about contributing to a high-quality and efficient care system. Additionally, the family nurse practitioner is interesting as they often find themselves as trusted primary care providers. A family nurse practitioner can attend to the same patients for decades and get to know their personalities, hopes, profile, and fears.

National and Local Organizations and Practice Standards

There are numerous professional organizations and associations that guide the family nurse profession. The International Family Nursing Association (IFNA) is one of them. It is an association for nurses that desire to boost their quality of care and overall health for patients. Other associations include the American Nurses Association (ANA), the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP), the Nurse Practitioner Associates for Continuing Education (NPACE), the Nurse Practitioner Healthcare Foundation, National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties, the American Association for the History of Nursing, and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Board. As a profession, the family nurse practitioner profession is guided by various standards including qualifications such as having a license (Fowler, 2017). Other practice standards include process of care, care priorities, interprofessional responsibilities, accurate documentation of patient care and status, and their role as patient advocates. Other standards include quality assurance, the combined role of a nurse practitioner, and research as a basis for practice.

Training, Competency, and Specialization Expectations

To qualify as a licensed and certified family nurse practitioner, one must finish at least 500 hours of supervised clinical hours after a viable healthcare setting like a family practice center. The certificate and degree programs that family nurse practitioners undertake tend to incorporate clinical hours in the course requirements. The core competencies of a family nurse practitioner include international relations, communication, decision making, critical thinking, technology, organization, and leadership.

Exemplification and Contributions of the Family Nursing Practitioner Specialty

There are various individuals that exemplify the specialty of the family nursing practitioner professional. The top clinical focus for family nurse is urgent care, family, and primary care. These individuals mostly practice family nursing in private group practices, outpatient clinics and private physician practices. The contributions of a family nurse practitioner include providing preventative care services that prevent hospital admissions and emergency rooms and reduce hospital visits (Ainslie & Bragdon, 2018). Another unique contribution of family nurse practitioners is that they practice in various healthcare settings, including private practice, community health centers, universities and health care systems.

Patient Advocacy in the Family Nursing Practitioner Specialty

In line with provision three of the ANA code of ethics, family nurse practitioners are expected to promote, advocate for, and protect the health, rights, and safety of the patient. They offer invaluable service through safeguarding their client’s right to privacy. While patient advocacy has been deemed an integral part of nursing, experts posit the need to better understand its exact components (Collins, Broeseker, Cunningham, Cortes, Beall, Bigham, & Chang, 2017). An article “Patient Advocacy: The Role of the Nurse” for the Nursing Standard details various factors affecting advocacy efforts. The article also details the precise ways through which nurses can advocate for their patients in a healthcare setting including fostering collaboration, protecting them from harm, communicating patient preferences, supporting the patients voice on matters care and choices, and giving them important information critical for their decision making.

Professional Advancement in the Family Nursing Practitioner Specialty

In line with provision seven of the ANA code of ethics, family nurse practitioners are expected to advance in the profession in all roles and setting through scholarly inquiry, research, development of health and nursing policies and professional standards of development. One of the notable professional advancements has a lot to do with technology. With technology evolving rapidly, family nurse practitioners have shifted the way they carry out their mandate. They have shifted their patient records from paper to digital and are incorporating tools such as smart beds, mobile monitoring devices, mobile apps, and wearable devices.

Integrity and Social Justice in the Family Nursing Practitioner Specialty

In line with provision nine of the ANA code of ethics, family nurse practitioners are expected to demonstrate nursing values, maintain integrity, and incorporate principles of social justice in health policy and nursing. They can do this by being dependable, honest, treating their patients with respect, and holding themselves accountable. Further, they can exemplify integrity by giving credit to other people for their efforts, respecting equipment and property, following company rules, and setting a good example for other people to emulate.


Ainslie, M., & Bragdon, C. (2018). Telemedicine simulation in online family nurse practitioner education: Clinical competency and technology integration. Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, 30(8), 430-434., A., Broeseker, A., Cunningham, J., Cortes, C., Beall, J., Bigham, A., & Chang, J. (2017). A longitudinal online interprofessional education experience involving family nurse practitioner students and pharmacy students. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 31(2), 218-225., M. D. (2017). Faith and ethics, covenant and code: The 2015 revision of the ANA code of ethics for nurses with interpretive statements. Journal of Christian Nursing, 34(4), 216-224.,_Covenant_and_Code__The_2015.8.aspx?context=FeaturedArticles&collectionId=1