Considerations for subspecialty preparation for nurse practitioners

Celicia Williams Little, Sharon Dudley-Brown


The number of nurse practitioners (NP) entering pediatric gastroenterology is increasing. Most nurse practitioners acquire knowledge and skills through special NP fellowship programs and on-the-job training. However, professional competencies have yet to be defined or standardized. The authors sought to evaluate subspecialty nursing organizations' role in developing education programs that improve NP preparation for practice. Nurse Practitioners completed an assessment survey to determine the need for an education program and the type of education program desired. Based on the survey feedback, the authors created a pediatric gastroenterology-focused education program through the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP) in partnership with the Association of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition Nurses (APGNN). A pre-test/post-test design was utilized to determine knowledge obtainment. Post-test knowledge scores supported the program's ability to increase preparation. A post-test score increase was noted among new NPs and those who were members of specialty organizations. The development, implementation, and evaluation of standardized competencies and education programs through specialty organizations should be considered.

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Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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