Nurses to Play Bigger Role in Management of Patient Care

America’s nurses play a larger role these days in the management of patient care than was ever the case previously, a recent University of Phoenix College of Health Professions survey finds.

According to the survey, more than eight in 10 registered nurses (RNs) agree that healthcare professionals besides physicians (i.e. nurse practitioners, registered nurses, etc.) are playing (87 percent), or will play (82 percent), a larger role in the overall management of patient care.

In honor of National Nurses Week (May 6-12), University of Phoenix sought to understand the evolving role of nurses and what this changing environment means for the future of healthcare.

In addition to nurses playing a larger role in managing patient care, about a third (33 percent) of RNs say that they have seen an increased role in doing tasks traditionally done by a physician.

This may be due in part to specialty tracks available to nurses, including nurse practitioner programs.

When asked how they expect their role to change within the next five years, RNs cited the following for most anticipated changes:

  • Increasing involvement with information systems (43 percent)
  • Increasing involvement with regulations (43 percent)
  • Increasingly greater role in the management of overall patient care planning (40 percent)
  • Increasingly greater leadership role at [their] facility (36 percent)

About a third of RNs (36 percent) say they will see an increased role in focusing on the emotional well-being of patients. Additionally, nearly three in five (59 percent) RNs strongly agree that good people skills are just as important as technical skills when giving quality care.

“The ability to balance bedside care with technical and leadership skills is crucial for today’s nurses,” said Dr. Radesi. “The job expectations for nurses continue to grow, but the heart of the profession will always be in providing the best possible care for patients. This should be encouraging, as nurses can use these new skills to continue to learn and grow within their roles while healing and helping their patients.”

As opportunities continue to increase in the profession (the Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that employment of registered nurses is projected to grow 15 percent from 2016 to 2026), RNs note that their facilities should focus on preparing healthcare professionals with greater leadership skills (87 percent), according to the survey.

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