Advanced Nurse Practitioners defines a level of nursing practice that utilizes extended and expanded skills, experience and knowledge in assessment, planning, implementation, diagnosis and assessment of the consideration required. They should have something like a graduate degree to sit for one of the APRN specialization exams.

Nurses practising at this level are educationally prepared at the post-graduate level and may work in either a specialist or generalist capacity. However, the basis of advanced practice is the high degree of knowledge, skill and experience that is applied within the nurse-patient/client relationship to achieve optimal outcomes through critical analysis, problem-solving and evidence-based decision making. The role of an Advanced Nurse Practitioner is valued within the NHS as they can work autonomously within many different primary and secondary care settings.

The importance of advanced nurse practitioners

Advance nurse practitioners make an important contribution to the NHS and the role has been successfully introduced in many different settings. They are not only able to substitute for doctors, which is highly relevant in view of the growing shortage of GPs.

Advanced nurse practitioners are excellent collaborators and referring providers.  They are able to diagnose and study their patients, and they know when the illness or disease needs extra expert support.  However they do this inside a clearly defined scope of practice that is agreed with their employer, and the level of medical complexity that they deal with is usually less than that of a General Practitioner. Advanced nurse practitioners in primary care and the community are able to develop close, long-term relationships with their patients and work in organization with them to enable them to accomplish their ideal level of wellbeing.

Practice Settings For Advanced Nurse Practitioners

  • Private practice clinics
  • Long-term care facilities.
  • Healthcare policy settings.
  • Urgent Care Centres
  • Public or Private Schools
  • Nursing Homes

Key responsibilities

Clinical practice responsibilities

  • Assess, diagnose, plan, implement and evaluate treatment/interventions and care for patients presenting with an undifferentiated diagnosis
  • Clinically analyze and evaluate understanding needs from a physiological and mental point of view, and plan clinical consideration appropriately
  • Survey, analyze, plan, execute and assess intercessions/medications for patients with complex needs.
  • Proactively identify, diagnose and manage treatment plans for patients at risk of developing a long-term condition (as appropriate)
  • Diagnose and manage both acute and chronic conditions, integrating both drug- and non-drug-based treatment methods into a management plan
  • Prescribe and review medication for therapeutic effectiveness, appropriate to patient needs and in accordance with the evidence-based practice and national and practice protocols, and within scope of practice
  • Work with patients keeping in mind the end goal to help consistence with and adherence to recommended. Provide information and advice on prescribed or over-the-counter medication on medication regimens, side-effects and interactions
  • Prioritise health problems and intervene appropriately to assist the patient in complex, urgent or earnest or crisis circumstances, including the commencement of compelling crisis care.
  • Support patients to adopt health promotion strategies that advance solid ways of life, and apply standards of self-care.

Communication Skills

  • Utilise and demonstrate sensitive communication styles, to ensure patients are fully informed and consent to treatment
  • Communicate effectively with patients and carers, recognising the need for alternative methods of communication to overcome different levels of understanding, cultural background and preferred ways of communicating
  • Anticipate barriers to communication and take action to improve communication
  • Maintain effective communication within the practice environment and with external stakeholders
  • Act as an advocate for patients and colleagues
  • Ensure awareness of sources of support and guidance (eg PALS) and provide information in an acceptable format to all patients, recognising any difficulties and referring where appropriate

Delivering a quality service

  • Recognise and work within own competence and professional code of conduct as regulated by the NMC.
  • Produce accurate, contemporaneous and complete records of patient consultation, consistent with legislation, policies and procedures
  • Prioritise, organise and manage own workload in a manner that maintains and promotes quality
  • Deliver care according to NICE guidelines and evidence-based care
  • Assess the effectiveness of care delivery through self and peer review, benchmarking and formal evaluation
  • Initiate and participate in the maintenance of quality governance systems and processes across the organisation and its activities
  • Utilise the audit cycle as a means of evaluating the quality of the work of self and the team, implementing developments where required
  • In organization with other clinical groups, team up on enhancing the nature of human services reacting to nearby and national strategies and activities as fitting
  • Assess patients’ reaction to social insurance arrangement and the viability of consideration
  • Support and take part in shared learning over the training and more extensive association

Leadership Skills

  • Take responsibility for own learning and performance including participating in clinical supervision and acting as a positive role model
  • Support staff development in order to maximise potential
  • Critically evaluate and review innovations and developments that are relevant to the area of work
  • Enlist support and influence stakeholders and decision-makers in order to bring about new developments in the provision of services
  • Take a lead role in planning and implementing changes in the area of care and responsibility
  • Contribute to the development of local guidelines, protocols and standards
  •  Market the role of the advanced nurse practitioner in general practice

Key Relationships/Contacts


  • Lead Practice Nurse
  • Practice Nursing Team and Healthcare Assistants
  • GPs
  • Doctors in Training
  • Practice Manager/Office Manager
  • Administration Team
  • Secretarial Team


  • Patients, carers and relatives
  • Practice suppliers (equipment, supplies and services)


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