St. John’s, NL – The Registered Nurses’ Union (RNU) Newfoundland & Labrador is proud to acknowledge November 10 to 16 as Nurse Practitioner Week, an opportunity to recognize  and celebrate the vital role of nurse practitioners (NPs) in our health care system.

“NPs play an integral role in providing knowledgeable, quality care to patients in acute care, long term care and the community throughout Newfoundland and Labrador. We believe NPs can help alleviate the growing stress on our health care system,” said Debbie Forward, President, RNU. “The improvements NPs could make in the delivery of primary health care are monumental, but to realize this potential we need the Provincial Government to implement publicly funded and publicly delivered NP services within our communities.”

NPs are highly skilled autonomous practitioners with advanced education and broad scope of practice, allowing them to diagnose, treat, refer and prescribe medications. NP practice provides a patient-centered approach that includes health promotion and patient education.

Currently, the public has to pay out of pocket to see a primary health care NP not employed by a regional health authority, where as a visit to a family physician is covered by MCP. Introducing a public funding model for NPs is critical to improving access to care that is equitable for all. A recent public survey conducted by the RNU showed a strong show of support for publicly funded NP led clinics, with 90 per cent in favour of the concept.

“We call on government to listen to NPs and the people of this province and support a public funding model for NP services, including NP led clinics. NPs can help address shortages of primary health care providers, improve access and address wait times. We need action now.”

For more information on the RNU and its members, visit rnunl.ca.

ABOUT RNUNL

The Registered Nurses’ Union Newfoundland & Labrador is the official trade union and strong unified voice for approximately 5300 registered nurses and nurse practitioners working in Newfoundland and Labrador.

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Media Contact:

Jackie O’Brien
Communications Specialist
709-753-9961
709-691-0889
jobrien@rnunl.ca