Role of the AC-PNP

Role of the AC-PNP


The core body of knowledge and competencies for pediatric or adult-gerontology AC-PNP preparation and practice is derived from the full spectrum of needs of high-acuity patient care along the wellness-to-illness continuum. The ACNP assesses patients with acute, critical, and/or complex chronic illnesses through their health history, physical and mental status examinations, and health risk appraisals. Diagnostic reasoning, advanced therapeutic interventions, and referral to and consultation with other members of the inter-professional health care team are intrinsic to this role.

The ACNP acknowledges and incorporates the dynamic nature of acute, critical, and/or complex chronic illnesses in the provision of care. The ACNP also individualizes care with respect to gender, age, developmental level, race, cultural differences, individuality, ethnicity, spiritual beliefs, lifestyle, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, disability, and family configuration.

The focus of the ACNP is the provision of restorative, curative, rehabilitative, palliative, and/or supportive end-of-life care as determined by patient needs. Goals include patient stabilization for acute and life-threatening conditions, minimizing or preventing complications, attending to comorbidities, and promoting physical and psychologic well-being. Additional goals include the restoration of maximum health potential or providing for palliative, supportive, and end-of-life care, as well as an evaluation of risk factors in achieving these outcomes. Intrinsic to achieving these goals are the following key components of the ACNP role:

  • Taking comprehensive histories and providing physical examinations and other health assessment and screening activities for nurse practitioners

  • Diagnosing, treating, and managing patients with acute and chronic illnesses and disease

  • Ordering, performing, supervising, and interpreting laboratory and imaging studies

  • Prescribing medications, durable medical equipment, and advanced therapeutic interventions

  • Developing specialized psychomotor skills in the performance of procedures

  • Initiating health promotion, disease prevention, health education, and counseling

  • Collaborating and communicating with members of the inter-professional health care team