- Article:Assessing the value of specialist nurses
- Author: Monica Fletcher is chief executive, Education for Health, and chair of the European Lung Foundation
- Since 2005-06, there has been a 465% increase in outpatient attendances at specialist nurse clinics – a rise of more 100,000 outpatients a year
- Patients appear to value the services provided by specialist nurses; they are consistently rated better than those of other health professionals
- The role and function of specialist nurses, services they provide and their effects should be described and measured accurately
- Specialist nurses need to ensure that they have evidence their services are cost-effective and improve patient safety and services
- The unique knowledge, skills and experiences of specialist nurses means they could play a vital role in commissioning
- What value do specialist nurses add to care of patients in your ward, department or team?
- What evidence could you use to demonstrate their value to managers or service commissioners?
- Do specialist nurses have appropriate business skills to justify the services they provide?
- Do you think specialist nurses are at greater risk of cuts in times of financial austerity than general nurses?
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