• Thanks for stopping by. Logging in to a registered account will remove all generic ads. Please reach out with any questions or concerns.

Nurse Practitioners in the CAF

OblivionKnight

Jr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Hello, I will be completing my BScN pretty soon, and I was thinking about re-applying to the CAF. However, I recently learned that the military doesn't hire NPs, and therefore doesn't fund the MScN-NP degree. Is there a particular reason for this, and if so, is it likely to change in the near future?
 

Armymedic

Army.ca Veteran
Mentor
Reaction score
0
Points
0
The CAF does not hire NPs for uniform service. The CAF does hire, through contract, several civilian nurse practitioners.
 

Blackadder1916

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
1,082
Points
1,160
OblivionKnight said:
. . . However, I recently learned that the military doesn't hire NPs, and therefore doesn't fund the MScN-NP degree. Is there a particular reason for this, and if so, is it likely to change in the near future?


If one was to refer to the description of NPs provided by the CNA . . .
https://cna-aiic.ca/en/professional-development/advanced-nursing-practice/nurse-practitioners
Nurse practitioners (NPs) are registered nurses who have additional education and nursing experience, which enables them to:

Autonomously diagnose and treat illnesses
Order and interpret tests
Prescribe medications
Perform medical procedures

and compare it to the description of a Physician Assistant . . .
https://capa-acam.ca/faqs/who-are-physician-assistants-and-what-do-they-do/
Physician Assistants (PA) are highly skilled health professionals who support physicians in all health care settings. In Canada, the PA role was developed within the Canadian Forces Health Services to provide a full spectrum of medical care. Within a formal Physician/Physician Assistant relationship, a PA has the skills and experience to deal with medical emergencies, specialty practice environments, as well as everyday health care needs. Depending on the agreement between the physician and the PA, activities may include conducting patient interviews, histories, physical examinations; performing selected diagnostic and therapeutic interventions; and counseling on preventive health care. The PA is a physician extender and not an independent practitioner; they work under the direction of supervising physicians within the client/patient-centered care team. As part of their comprehensive responsibilities, PAs conduct physical exams, diagnose and treat illnesses, order and interpret tests, counsel on preventive health care, assist in surgery, and write prescriptions. Within the physician-PA relationship, physician assistants exercise autonomy in medical decision making and provide a broad range of diagnostic and therapeutic services. A PA’s practice may also include education, research, and administrative services.

. . . you would realize that the functions most commonly performed by NPs (while in independent situations) in the civilian sector are currently performed by military PAs.  It does not make sense to hire (or train) pers to do something when there are already pers designated to fulfill that function.  It was only recently that the CF changed the PA occupation from NCM to officer and started commissioning currently serving PAs. https://army.ca/forums/threads/123235.0.html
 

OblivionKnight

Jr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Blackadder1916 said:
If one was to refer to the description of NPs provided by the CNA . . .
https://cna-aiic.ca/en/professional-development/advanced-nursing-practice/nurse-practitioners
and compare it to the description of a Physician Assistant . . .
https://capa-acam.ca/faqs/who-are-physician-assistants-and-what-do-they-do/
. . . you would realize that the functions most commonly performed by NPs (while in independent situations) in the civilian sector are currently performed by military PAs.  It does not make sense to hire (or train) pers to do something when there are already pers designated to fulfill that function.  It was only recently that the CF changed the PA occupation from NCM to officer and started commissioning currently serving PAs. https://army.ca/forums/threads/123235.0.html

Interesting. I suppose it makes sense that it should be commissioned as it's a degree after all. However, there are only about 3 PA schools throughout Canada and a significantly greater number of NP schools. Also, PAs aren't as prevalent as NPs when it comes to numbers. In addition, NPs don't require supervision by a physician, and therefore have greater autonomy in their practice (in the civilian sector, at least). Is this just a classic case of supply and demand then, where the CAF doesn't actively require persons to fill the role of PA/NP? It's just a lot to think about, because I do plan on going for NP within the next 3 years. So here's another question. Would it be possible to enroll in the CAF as a nursing officer, pursue the MScN-NP part-time online (self-funded), then release after completion? This process would take about 6 years.
 

OceanBonfire

Sr. Member
Reaction score
256
Points
880
The Canadian Forces Health Services Reserve has officially opened the Nursing Specialty (NUR SPEC) Nurse Practitioner (NP) sub-occupation to internal and external applicants! As of 01 April 2022, Reserve Force (Res F) Nursing Officers and members who meet the NP eligibility criteria are invited to apply for transfer to the NUR SPEC NP sub-occupation. Initial phases will allow for internal applicants to transfer into the NP sub-occupation with external applicants being considered for Fall/Winter 2022/2023 enrolment.

 
Top