4 December 2009

University of Queensland student Hayley Haggarty will become part of a new generation of nurses when she graduates next week.

Ms Haggarty joins five others to receive their qualifications as nurse practitioners on December 9 at UQ’s Ipswich campus.

UQ School of Nursing and Midwifery Teaching and Learning Coordinator, Associate Professor Stephanie Fox-Young, said nurse practitioners in Queensland will soon be able to provide their services in a wider variety of health settings.

“Nurses have always played an important role in the delivery of health care services,” Dr Fox-Young said.

“The proposed changes to Commonwealth legislation will soon enable nurse practitioners to practise to the full scope of their capabilities in both the community and hospitals.

“The nurse practitioner program offered by UQ is designed to expand the skills of experienced nurses, enabling them to provide advanced health care in a range of community and acute care settings, including that of general practice.”

According to the Head of the UQ School of Nursing and Midwifery Professor Catherine Turner, educating nurse practitioners provides a way to fill the increasing need for health care service providers within the community and hospital systems.

“As greater demand is placed on the existing health care system to provide access to a broader range of services and increased levels of care, the role of the nurse practitioner will grow,” Professor Turner said.

“Our nurse practitioner programs equip qualified, experienced nurses to work with greater autonomy in a variety of health settings, increasing the overall level of patient care, in partnership with other health professionals.”

Ms Haggarty said she was looking forward to working with general practitioners to provide better access to health care services for a wider selection of communities in Queensland.

For additional information on postgraduate programs contact the School of Nursing and Midwifery www.nursing-midwifery.uq.edu.au

Media: Nurse Practitioner Program Coordinator Hakan Strand (07 3346 5217, h.strand@uq.edu.au)