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Nursing encompasses self-governing and collaborative care of individuals of all ages, families, groups and communities, sick, or well and in all settings.
Nursing includes the promotion of health, prevention of illness, and the care of ill, disabled and dying persons. Advocacy of a safe environment, research, participation in shaping health policy and in patient and health systems management, an dedication are also key nursing roles.
Nurses are classified as either registered nurses (RNs) or enrolled nurses (ENs). In addition, midwives are registered separately to nursing. The endorsement of registration identifies registered nurses (and midwives) with additional qualifications and specific expertise which meet the requirements of the relevant registration standard (1).
Registered nurses working in clinical settings are educated to assess, plan, implement and evaluate nursing care provided to patients and clients across age, cultural and social spectrums. Their work may be undertaken independently or more commonly in collaboration with individuals and the multidisciplinary health care team in order to achieve goals and health outcomes.
An individual RN’s scope of practice is determined by a number of factors, such as their level of education, seniority, time in a specific role or specialty, and individual competence levels. The scope of practice of an individual RN is likely to be more specific that the scope of the profession.
The registered nurse practises independently and interdependently, assuming accountability and responsibility for their own actions and delegation of care to ENs and health care workers (1).
A Midwife is a registered health professional, having acquired the appropriate qualifications to practice midwifery.
Midwifery means ‘with woman’. Midwives provide the necessary support, care and advice during pregnancy, labour, birth and the postnatal period. They are trained in the birthing process and deal with any adverse situation including seeking medical assistance when required. They commence emergency procedures in the absence of medical help and provide health counselling where required (2).
|1||Ashley C. Australian medicare local alliance. Clarifying the roles, responsibilities and accountabilities of Nursing Professionals And Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners in primary care, including general practice. 2013. Christine Ashley Consulting.|
|2||NSW Health. Becoming a Registered Midwife. March 2020. [cited 2021 May 10] Available from: https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/nursing/careers/Pages/midwife.aspx|