Primary Health Care has worked to develop and implement new and enhanced primary health care teams that include interdisciplinary providers, such as nurse practitioners. A nurse practitioner is a registered nurse who has completed advanced education and training to provide a broad range of primary care services. Working collaboratively with family physicians, a nurse practitioner provides primary care for common medical conditions, with a focus on wellness, prevention and education.
The Hantsport Collaborative Team, established in 2008, serves residents in Hantsport and the surrounding areas, providing a range of comprehensive primary health care programs and services that are offered by a family physician and a nurse practitioner, including assessment, diagnosis, counselling, disease and injury prevention, health promotion, administration, referral, rehabilitation and palliative care.
The Musquodoboit Valley Family Practice undertook initiatives in late 2004 to enhance their collaborative care model. This included the incorporation of a nurse practitioner into the practice, development of new physical infrastructure, team building and planning and evaluation activities.
Over time, as resources are reallocated to Primary Health Care, it is envisioned that there will be potentially new opportunities to support the role of nurse practitioners in primary care, working with family physicians and others to reach people who do not traditionally access health services and those with complex chronic conditions.