Contemporary Roles of a Nurse

Contemporary Roles of a Nurse within a Multidisciplinary Team

ESSAY:What are a contemporary nurse’s role within the multidisciplinary team and how does
the nurse perform those roles within the team? Give some examples.
Resources:10 current & relevant that are less than 5 yrs.old text & journal

Contemporary Roles of a Nurse within a Multidisciplinary Team


Nurses are essential health care personnel in the contemporary society. Their roles dominate the
health care sector in more than ways. Nurses work with other health care providers in order to
fully serve patients. In the dissemination of health care services, most hospitals divide their
personnel into departments that constitute specialties from different fields. Usually, nurses and
other health professionals may undertake post-graduate courses to increase specialty in their
respective fields. Grouping of health workers with related knowledge but from different
perspectives guarantees high-quality medication to patients. The grouping results into a number
of team each addressing cases within the areas of specialty. By so doing, the otherwise bulky and
complicated activities in the health sector are simplified. Specialization and job division ensure
that the personnel are not overworked and at the same time, allow the different personnel to


develop experience in relevant matters. The concept of grouping professionals with related
specialty but from different basics results in what is termed as multidisciplinary teams. A team
that addresses conditions of a certain type is usually different from others. If a hospital
establishes the team spirit within its workforce better results are likely to be attained with less
straining. Just like other health care professionals, nurses advance their education to increase
their specialty. As such, nurses join their counterparts from other fields and together as a team
they provide care to the patients.For example, a nurse who pursues midwifery associates with
professionals in the field of gynecology. On the other hand, a nurse who pursues psychiatric
would join a team that deals with mental health care. In particular, a team dealing with mental
health would comprise of psychiatrists, psychiatrist nurses, clinical psychologists and psychiatric
social workers (PATIDAR, 2013, INTRODUCTION SECTION). All such personnel are related
though each of them approaches the matter from a perspective different from the others’.Issues
in this paper focus on the nurse’s contribution to such a team.

Contemporary Roles of a Nurse within a Multidisciplinary Team

American Nurses Association (ANA) noted that nurses are mainly involved with primary care
for patients (2012). For instance, they are the ones most trusted to offer first aid to patients,
especially the victims of accidents and crime. Usually, after doing what is expected of them,
nurses should them allow professions of other relevant fields to do their part. In a
multidisciplinary context, each professional is entrusted with a particular service to the patient.
For instance, nurses are believed to the most appropriate professionals to offer first aid services.
Regarding their training, professionals on a team are expected to account for what is relevant to
their field. Data shows that nurses in the US are the most health care providers that offer primary


care to patients (NAYLOR & KURTZMAN, 2010, Pg. 893). The data correlates with
Nurses conduct close monitoring of in-patients and offer valuable information to other health
professionals. In this way, nurses link patients to doctors and other clinicians therefore,
enhancing the provision of quality services. Nurses for instance could observe the feeding,
talking, breathing and other activities of a patient and communicate the same to doctors. Nurses
usually pay attention to observable improvements or deteriorations that a patient may depict. By
performing this role, nurses facilitate the provision of improved care to the most important
concern in the health sector; the patient. A nurse could for instance reports to the doctor that a
patient, seems to be affected by a certain medication and by heeding to the advice, the doctor
responds by prescribing an alternative drug. The ultimate healing of the patient therefore
depended on the nurse at least for a time.
Nurses also provide extensive education to their patients (JENNINGS, 2015, Pg. 78). In most
cases, nurses interact more with patients than does any other health care provider professionals.
The direct interaction place nurses in a good position for extending advice to patients. They may
even offer education that could be important, though unrelated to the patient’s present condition.
For instance, nurses would talk with women in their wards about benefits of breastfeeding their
babies while in the contextit is not the babies that are sick but the women.
Nurses also have a role to play by making policies pertaining to the health sector. The health
sector is a dynamic sector that is influenced by many external players. Being at the central
position in the health sector, nurses have plenty of information that would be useful in the
formulation of laws and policies concerning health matters (WAYNE, 2012, Pg. 18). For


instance, in the case of first aid provision, nurses could offer information that would help
improve services to victims of accidents and crimes. A nurse could cite the critical conditions of
the patients they receive to push that victims be given advanced care regardless of whether their
medication is funded or not. Murphy noted that nurses are competent enough to influence
changes in the health sector (In WAYNE, 2012, Pg. 56).This shows that nurses play a vital role
in policy making.
Nurses are also viewed as innovators who should contribute to advanced health care provision
(HASSMILLER, 2010, Pg. 173). Due to their wide exposure to different health conditions,
nurses can work with other health care providers to develop solutions to medical problems.
Nurses are placed in a position where they can easily identify arising issues in the health care.
For instance, nurses may observe the best environments for patients with a particular medical
condition, and use the knowledge in solving medical issues. If nurses offer their best into
research, many developments in the management of different health conditions would be made.
In addition, nurses together with other health professionals should suggest and develop education
policies that would equip health care students with the best skills to handle current issues in their
field. The working experience the nurses’ gain should place them into a position where they can
contribute to the betterment of the health sector by ensuring that newly graduated nurses possess
the best skills required to handle matters in the field. By offering this, nurses would have
responsibly and selflessly served the public.
Nurses also have the responsibility to protect the rights of their patients. Since most patients are
ignorant of the particulars of services offered to them, nurses have a great responsibility of
ensuring that they do not exploit the patients. All duties undertaken by the nurses should see to it


that while satisfying their interests, nurses do not tend toward evil implications for the patients.
People who make good nurses are compassionate and possess willingness to help others.


Nurses have a great role in the creation of the team-work environment with other health care
providers. As Hassmiller wrote, nurses should generously contribute in all matters pertaining to
health care provision. Nurses as Hassmiller further advised should promote the spirit of
teamwork when working with professionals from other fields by first understanding and
appreciating the role of other professionals. For multidisciplinary teams to succeed, members
should have a common goal, embrace each other and avoid creating tension among them (JANE,
LESLEY, JOANNE, BRONWYN, & KATHLEEN, 2010, 61).Hospitals with multidisciplinary
teams performs better than those without (O’ LEARY, SEHGAL, TERRELL, & WILLIAMS,
2011, Pg. 48)




AMERICAN NURSES UNION.(2012). CareCoordination and Registered Nurses’ Essential

HASSMILLER, S. (2010).Nursing Role in Health Care Reform.HealthCom Media, 5(9), n.p
Multidisciplinary Teams Caring for People with Chronic Conditions: Experiences of
Community Nurses and other Allied Health Professionals. A journal for Australian
Nursing Profession, 36(1/2), 61-70
JENNINGS, L. (2015). Roles and Functions of the Nurse.
NAYLOR, M. D., & KURTZMAN, E. T. (2010).The role of Nurse Practitioners in Reinventing
Primary Care. Health Affairs, 29(5), 893-899. doi: 10.1377/hlthaff.2010.0440


NHS CAREERS.UK.(n.d.).Nursing.
NYBERG, K. (2011). Teamwork and Collaboration Lead to Better Medical Care in Hospital
Setting. Yale School of Medicine.
Interdisciplinary Teamworks in Hospitals: A Review and Practical Recommendations for
Improvement., 7(1), 48-54 doi: 10.1002/jhm.970. Epub 2011 Oct 31
PATIDAR, J. V. (2013). Multidisciplinary Mental Health Team.LinkedIn Corporation,
WAYNE, K. (2012). The Nurses Role in Health Care Reform at the State Level.American
Journal of Nursing, 112(3), 8.doi: 10.1097/01.NAJ.0000412628.02033.27

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