Nova Scotia will soon be hiring 22 nurse practitioners and family practice nurses, four of which will serve the New Glasgow, Westville, Stellarton, and the Truro areas.
This means 2,400 more patients in those Northern Nova Scotia communities will be able to join a collaborative health team.
The province is giving Nova Scotia Health Authority an extra $3.6 million to hire 13 more nurse practitioners and nine family practice nurses across the province. The mix of professionals may change, depending on community needs and the recruitment process.
“By working together, doctors, nurse practitioners, family practice nurses and other professionals can offer better care to more Nova Scotians,” said Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Karen Casey, on behalf of Health and Wellness Minister Leo Glavine.
“This announcement means hundreds more people will be able to get the health-care appointments, advice, diagnosis and treatment they need.”
Nurse practitioners take advanced training that prepares them to diagnose and manage illnesses, order and interpret tests, and prescribe medications.
Family practice nurses are registered nurses who can independently assess, plan and coordinate care, make referrals, and evaluate how people are responding to treatment.
“This will help to ensure that people and families can get the care they need in their community,” said Tracey Martin, primary health-care manager, Nova Scotia Health Authority. “In a collaborative practice model, a team of providers work together to provide care centered on the patient’s needs.”
In the coming weeks, the health authority will issue an expression of interest in some communities, for family practices interested in hosting nurse practitioners or family practice nurses. Once that is complete, it will post the new positions.
New patients will start to be added as the new professionals are hired.