Roles And Responsibilities Of Registered Nurses
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A registered nurse is a medical professional who takes care of the patient in clinics, health care centers, schools, hospitals, etc. registered nurse graduates with a nursing program and qualifies the requirements as stated by the region, country, state, or any government authorized bodies so that the nurse can get a license to practice in the clinics, hospitals, schools, etc. (Smolowitz et al, 2015). The various role and responsibilities of a nurse will be discussed in the essay along with the role that a registered nurse plays in the multidisciplinary team in healthcare. Further, the role of the Nursing and Midwifery Council will be analyzed as a professional body. The code designed by NMC will be elaborated to understand different aspects of the code that should be followed by the registered nurse. Lastly, the importance of communication in multidisciplinary healthcare will be stated.
A registered nurse is the medical professional who takes care of the patient in clinics, health care centers, schools, hospitals, etc. registered nurse graduates with a nursing program and qualifies the requirements as stated by the region, country, state, or any government authorized bodies so that the nurse can get a license to practice in the clinics, hospitals, schools, etc. (Smolowitz et.al, 2015). There are various roles and responsibilities of a registered nurse such as assisting physicians, reviewing medical history, educating patients about the disease and medicines, assessing patients, etc. The roles and responsibilities of a nurse have changed over time, earlier the roles and responsibilities were restricted as an assistant of medical professions and reporting to ward sisters. Along with the uniforms, education, scope, remuneration has also changed in the nursing profession. With the modernization of NHS, and advancement in the medical sector, the roles of nurses have been changed (Gausvik et al., 2015).
Starting with the education, earlier the nurses were allowed to complete a diploma course and practice whereas the modern medical system demands the nurses to complete a degree-level course to be updated about the requirements for practicing in healthcare institutions (Hickman et al., 2020). Earlier the nurses were trained on all the general treatment and assistance whereas, now the medical nurse can select the field of specializations. As the population has increased, the demand for nurses has also increased whereas the supply is not adequate to meet the demands which create pressure on the nurses to deal with several patients in less time. As the importance of data has increased, so is the responsibility of nurses (Smolowitz et al., 2015). It is necessary to record every detail about the patients as many times, attendants of the patients sue the medical staff for the death of patients (Kutney-Lee et al, 2013). To deal with the legal circumstances, they must have paperwork of every medication, temperature, and other body measures. The nurses must also know the execution of technology used in medical treatments. With the technological advancement in healthcare, patient care has become more efficient in saving more lives. Earlier the nurses were considered as medical professional assistants whereas now the nurses are considered as an own profession with distinct medical knowledge (Scholl and Olaniran, 2013). Now the job is not restricted to take care of patients in clinics and hospitals, whereas now there are learning disability nurses, children nurses in schools, prison nurses to deal with criminals, neonatal nurses, etc.
The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) is the organization that regulated nursing in the United Kingdom. The organization is responsible for declaring and regulating standards to assure quality assurance of nursing education and services. The organization also investigates complaints against any nursing professionals (Scholl and Olaniran, 2013). As a professional body, NMC is responsible for the registration of nurses and midwives who have qualified the requirements for the registration as a nurse. The organization sets standards of knowledge, skills, and behavior for the registered nurse (Rooke, 2014). The standards are promoted and evaluated regularly by the organization to shape the professionals with lifelong learning revalidation. Any serious concerns of patients or any other person who complaints about nurses are investigated and if required, actions are undertaken against the registered nurse. The organization takes care of the patient health as well as the rights of registered nurses. The code for practices for patient care is provided by the organization and in case of any legal action against the nurses, the council is responsible to conduct the investigations based on decision rules and regulations (Rooke, 2014).
There is a professional standard laid out by the Nursing and Midwifery Council for the behavior and practice of nurses, midwives, and associates in nursing which is referred to as the “Code”. The basic outline of the code states that a registered nurse, midwife, or nursing associate must prioritize people (patients), practice effectively, preserve the safety of patients and promote professionalism and trust while practicing (Kutney-Lee et al., 2013). The code describes the professional standards that are required to be registered as a nurse in the United Kingdom. The principles of code are pervasive in many units but it is not at all negotiable or discretionary as it deals with the health and safety of patients (Nmc.org.UK, 2021). The code is the basic requirements that patients expect from health professionals while trusting them with their health. Any nurse or midwife registered in the organization must commit to upholding the standards, the nurses can be de-registered in case of failure in commitment. The code is used to educate the students about the roles and responsibilities of a registered nurse and what it takes to be registered (MacLellan et al., 2015).
The code is used by healthcare organizations to promote safe and effective practices in the workplace. The employers are known to use the code for supporting the staff in upholding the professional standards. The code helps to maintain and promote trust through professionalism as the interest of patients, and service users are prioritized in the code, it educates the midwives and nurses about good nursing practices (Pennbrant et al., 2013). There are various clauses such as prioritizing people means treating people with kindness, following fundamental of patient care, working in partnership, the nurses must avoid making any assumptions and understand the diversity while respecting it. Another important aspect discussed in the code is respecting the patients’ right to privacy and confidentiality while they are alive or in the case when they are dead (Nmc.org.uk. 2021).
The effective practice discussed the instructions of patient care such as diagnosing, utilizing the skills and expertise to help the colleagues so that a cooperative environment is established at the workplace. Effective communication must exist between the nurses, doctors, and patients as nurses and midwives act as a middleman between the two (Pennbrant et al., 2013). The effective practice also means a clear record of the patient to avoid any risks or problems. The steps taken to treat the patient must be following the medical council guidelines (Gausvik et.al, 2015). The data protection must be followed by collecting, storing, or utilizing data. A nurse must be accountable while allocating tasks and duties to others, the output of the allocated task must meet the standards (Pennbrant et al., 2013).
Preserving safety guidelines explains that the nurses must act immediately to avoid any further potential harm to the patient in case of risk to patient health or public protection. It highlights that professionals must raise the concern if they are asked to practice out of the role, experience, or training (Scholl and Olaniran, 2013). The reputation of the profession must be upheld at all times to preserve the trust in professionalism. Professionalism in the code states that a nurse or midwife must not let the complaint affect the care of the patient, cooperating with the audits of training records, records of registration, etc.
Healthcare is the sector that deals with the public’s health, hence, every profession in the health sector must deal with responsibility. To effectively perform the roles and responsibilities, effective communication must exist between colleagues, patients, and all the medical staff to deal with patients carefully and responsibly (Scholl and Olaniran, 2013). Due to the advancement in healthcare, hospital stays have reduced, the technological dependency has increased, and with the increase in population, the workload on medical infrastructure has increased manifolds. The patients and their caretakers are often vulnerable due to poor health which also causes anxiety that can affect the process of recovering the patient (Scholl and Olaniran, 2013). The medical staff must communicate with the patient and caretakers so that they are educated enough about the procedure and reduce the anxiety that can help the patient to recover soon. In case of transfer cases of patients from one department to another or from one hospital to another, the staff of both ends must communicate to share all the details about the patient’s health that can help the other hospital or department to treat the patient effectively (Pennbrant et al., 2013). With effective communication, patient safety is ensured, it aids in interhospital and intrahospital transfers of patients. Communication plays important role in transmitting the data of patients, research findings, and collaborating with colleagues. Effective communication is bidirectional that means the medical staff should be active listeners so that patients can convey the information to the healthcare professionals (Pennbrant et al., 2013). The information collected from the staff, patient, or another hospital must be comprehended and interpreted by the medical staff to treat the patients effectively.
Health care is a multidisciplinary team with a range of health professionals that contribute to patient care. Nurses play a very important role in the multidisciplinary team management in healthcare as they are involved in all the protocols of treatment and play different roles (Smolowitz et al., 2015). The nurses have teaching and counseling skills that help them to understand the patient well and educate them about the treatment that can help the patient to recover, nurses effectively manage the medications doses, interactions, etc. The nurses are also trained on management theory which helps them to coordinate with the physiotherapists, pharmacists, etc. nurses are also responsible for the data collection and processing (McCrae, 2012). Therefore, a nurse plays multiple roles in various dimensions such as counseling, data treatment, diagnosis, a coordinator with different departments, and several others.
The essay describes the meaning of a registered nurse and the role that a registered nurse plays in the healthcare sector. It reflects the multidisciplinary role of the nurse as the role of the nurse is diverted to many departments. The role and responsibility of the nursing and midwifery council are also discussed that explains the importance of NMC as the professional council that regulates the working of nurses and midwives in healthcare. Further, the analysis of NMC code discussed various clause which regulates and defines the working of a registered nurse. The code states to prioritize people, practice effectively, and maintain trust in professionalism. The essay also explained the role of effective communication in healthcare as it facilitates patient care.
The registered nurses and organizations such as the Nursing and Midwifery Council play a very important role in the proper functioning of a medical system. So, after the analysis of the research findings, the following recommendations can be made to ensure the best outcomes
- In the nursing field, there is an inherent stigma against male nurses, although they need to be properly trained and qualified to be a part of such a system in the first place. The Nursing and Midwifery Council should try to run programs at the root level like in schools to make the younger generation understand the needs and responsibilities of a nurse which will lessen the burden from the current workforce (MacLellan et.al, 2015).
- Nurses act as the middlemen between doctors and patients. So, more often than not, they play a vital role in conveying the requirements of the patients over to the doctors. Therefore, proper training of registered nurses should be done to ensure effective communication (Smolowitz et al., 2015).
- In this data-driven world, even hospital systems have tended to become heavily reliant on data. Nurses should be provided adequate training to handle data and the proper systems and types of machinery in the right way. This skill will also help enhance the paycheck of nurses (Scholl and Olaniran, 2013).
Gausvik, C., Lautar, A., Miller, L., Pallerla, H. and Schlaudecker, J., 2015. Structured nursing communication on interdisciplinary acute care teams improves perceptions of safety, efficiency, understanding of care plan and teamwork as well as job satisfaction. Journal of multidisciplinary healthcare, 8, p.33.
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McCrae, N., 2012. Whither nursing models? The value of nursing theory in the context of evidence?based practice and multidisciplinary health care. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 68(1), pp.222-229.
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