Clinical Nurse Specialist Revealed
A clinical nurse specialist belongs to the list of the advanced practice nurse which has earned a master’s or doctoral degree. He/she is someone who has involved himself/herself in a specialized area of nursing practice which makes the individual an expert in a specific clinical setting. As its name implies, clinical nurse specialist is someone who is very knowledgeable, learned and skilled when it comes to evidence-based nursing interventions in a specialized clinical set-up.
As you already know, a clinical nurse specialist work with other nurses to advance their nursing practices, improve their outcomes, and provide their expertise in the clinical area to contribute to the ever dynamic changing state of our healthcare delivery system. The clinical nurse specialist as mentioned is an advanced practice nurse whose focus or emphasis is to take care of people of a certain population.
This professional can specialize or focus his/her skills and expertise in certain types of diseases such as that of diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and many more. Furthermore, a clinical nurse specialist can also work in different medical environments like in the operating room, emergency room, or critical care unit. He/she can also focus the learned skills on a variety of procedures which either can be surgical or clinical in nature. No matter what perspective you view this concept, being a clinical nurse specialist is a career that demands someone who is definitely versatile.
There are basically 5 general duties which complete a clinical nurse specialist’s daily routine tasks. These tasks include clinical practice, teaching, consulting, research and management. The assessment skills of the clinical nurse specialist are more focused than that of a nurse practitioner. This is practically because the skills required from a clinical nurse specialist emphasizes on a very particular area of specialty.
Furthermore, it has been known that a clinical nurse specialist is an advanced practice nurse whose area of clinical practice may be in one of the following:
- A population: This may refer to groups or aggregates such as pediiatrics, geriatrics and women’s health
- A setting: This option may include critical care unit, emergency room, operating room and others.
- A disease or medical subspecialty: There are a lot of diseases to choose from and it could be diabetes, cancer, hypertension and many more.
- A type of care: Due to the complexity of the nursing profession, a clinical nurse specialist has the freedom to choose which among the types of care he/she wants to be acquainted with. It could be psychiatric, rehabilitation and others.
- A type of health problem: Under this could be the focus on pain, wounds, stress and the likes.
Aside from the conventional responsibilities of a clinical nurse specialist which is to help patients in the prevention and cure of illnesses, this clinical nurse specialist is entitled to diagnose and treat diseases, injuries and other disabilities which is bounded by his/her field of expertise. The clinical nurse specialist offers direct contact patient care, portrays the role as expert consultants among the nursing staff, and is very active in terms of looking for ways in improving the health care delivery system.
Clinical Nurse Specialist – Working Conditions
According to a reliable source, there are approximately 69,000 clinical nurse specialists based in the United States and working at their fullest as guided by our health care delivery system. It is said that a clinical nurse specialist’s salary range is from $50,000 to over $100,000. This rough estimation, however, is greatly dependent on where the clinical nurse specialist is assigned and to what degree or extent he/she shows off work.
Clinical Nurse Specialist – Job Description
A clinical nurse specialist is someone who is responsible for assessing the nursing practice of different health care facilities. Along with this assessment requirement is to know whether the said practices have created an impact to the recipients of health care. Moreover, a clinical nurse specialist must be able to provide clinical direction to nursing staff in the delivery of patient care programs. It is also in the scope of a clinical nurse specialist’s job to ensure that staff nurses have been working at their maximum and highest extent of competency.
He/she may have finished a master’s degree in nursing or perhaps, 5 years of experience in the area where the clinical nurse specialist wants to be assigned to. As a clinical nurse specialist, you have the obligation to familiarize the basic fundamental of the variety of the profession’s concepts but get only to be master in one. A good clinical nurse specialist greatly relies on his/her personal extensive experience, knowledge, decision making, problem solving and critical thinking skills to successfully accomplish all goals established.
Clinical Nurse Specialist – Spheres of Influence
As a clinical nurse specialist, there are three domains of the practice of a clinical nurse specialist. These are known as the three spheres of influence and it covers the patient himself, the nursing personnel and the healthcare system. A clinical nurse specialist, or maybe even student nurses, know already that the previously mentioned three domains of the practice are overlapping and interrelated with each other. In each sphere of influence in the practice of the clinical nurse specialist, his/her goal is to improve patient outcome and client care.
Clinical Nurse Specialist – Core Competencies
Given the three spheres of the clinical nurse instructor practice, someone in the person of Sparacinio has identifies seven competencies. These are:
- Direct clinical practice. This includes expertise in the nursing process.
- Expert coaching and guidance in the process of providing education and health teachings to patient and family.
- Collaboration which is centered on multidisciplinary team building.
- Consultation consists of reviewing the alternative approaches of the dimensions of the nursing process.
- Research includes the interpretation, utilization and evaluation of a study.
- Clinical and professional leadership entails responsibility and the innovation or change in the patient care system.
- Ethical decision making includes the influence in the negotiation and settlement of moral dilemmas, allocation of resources and direct patient care with access to it.
This sums up the basic duties and responsibilities of a clinical nurse specialist.
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