Showing posts from: September 2018

F.A.Q About Signing Death Certificates as a NP

The first time a death certificate appears on your desk as a nurse practitioner is a nerve wracking moment. Are you allowed to sign death certificates as an NP? If so, what if you are unsure of the cause of death? What's the liability involved with signing a death certificate? Naturally, there's a lot of confusion and concern among nurse practitioners when it comes to signing death certificates so today we're addressing some F.A.Q. to clear up the confusion. 

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5 CYA Charting Tips from a Malpractice Attorney

Two weeks ago at our Midlevels for the Medically Underserved kickoff, we had a panel of attorneys share advice for nurse practitioners related to medical malpractice. As NPs, medical malpractice is something we must be aware of. We're all human and we all make mistakes. Even those of us who practice error-free are bound to have a patient with a negative health outcome from time to time given the undeniable fact that health naturally decompensates over the course of a lifetime. 

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Second Jobs? Side Hustles? What NPs Need to Know

By Jennifer Lankford, Labor and Employment Attorney 

Moonlighting. Daylighting. Side Hustle. No matter how you describe it, second jobs or passions turned profits are common among nurse practitioners. Given the unique work hours of many NPs, you may have downtime that can be used to pick up nursing work for another health care provider, or, as is becoming more and more common, to pursue an entirely different career. Before signing on for a second job or promoting your Etsy shop among co-workers and on social media, here are some tips to keep in mind.

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What's Up With Tramadol Falling Out of Favor?

Confession: I didn't quite get as far as I wanted to in the opioid blog series this summer. Planning for our epic MMU kickoff got in the way (and it was totally worth it!). But, I'm back on the bandwagon when it comes to talking about this hot topic - in a practical manner. One topic that come up at the kickoff of our residency-like program was Tramadol. I've prescribed Tramadol often for patients in the past as a non-opioid(ish) pain medication option. And, it works (sometimes).

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The Lidocaine Shortage: An End in Sight?

If you're a nurse practitioner who does a lot of procedures or works in the inpatient hospital setting, you're probably aware of the national lidocaine shortage. As an emergency NP, I've been receiving emails about the shortage for awhile now. Just how bad is the shortage and when will it end? I'm not interested in resorting to performing procedures without anesthesia. 

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Your Questions About Working in the ER, Answered

After I graduated from my nurse practitioner program, it took me a few years to find my niche. I always knew I wanted to work in the emergency department, however employers required experience and refused to budge. Unable to land so much as an interview in the ER, I settled for employment at a walk-in/primary care clinic and then in urgent care. With two years of experience under my belt, I was finally able to talk my way into an interview at a local emergency department. Five years later, I’m still employed by the same hospital and am enjoying life as a seasoned emergency department nurse practitioner. 

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How to Tell a Patient "I Don't Know"

How do you react when you don't know the answer to a patient's question? Does your face flush? Do you reply with an answer that doesn't directly address the question asked? Do you abruptly end the conversation? Experts say that the words "I don't know" might be some of the hardest to say, even more so than "I love you". Admitting uncertainty or lack of knowledge isn't easy - just ask children and Alzheimer's patients who confabulate rather an utter a simple "I'm not sure". As nurse practitioners, however, we inevitably find ourselves in situations where we don't have the answers. 

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How to Ask for a Raise as a Nurse Practitioner

Talking about money is awkward. Especially when your boss is on the other end of the conversation. As a nurse practitioner, you may feel that your salary is not longer competitive in the job market, or, that your skill set has increased making you a more profitable asset to your practice. Regardless of the reason you believe you’re due a salary increase, thinking through how you will approach the ask is essential to your success. The following pointers will help you navigate the process of asking for a raise in your nurse practitioner job. 

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My Best Advice for Anxiety-Filled New Grad NPs

New grad nurse practitioner life is no joke. Even if you've worked as a nurse for many years, you're taking on a new role with significantly more responsibility as an NP. Now, you're responsible for diagnosing and creating a treatment plan, in some cases working almost autonomously. For new nurse practitioners, this can be an anxiety provoking experience. 

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8 Questions to Show Why You're Unhappy in Your NP Job

OK, I didn't mean to make it 'quit your job' theme week here on the MidlevelU blog. But, somehow multiple posts I've worked on recently seemed to center around the topic. Just to clear the air, I am currently satisfied at work. But, there have been plenty of occasions when I've called my career as a nurse practitioner into question, or dealt with job specific dissatisfaction-causing issue. 

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How to Actually Get Hired from a Nurse Practitioner Job Board

Searching for a nurse practitioner job might feel as though you’ve taken on a PRN position in addition to your current work; it can be that time consuming. Although many NPs rely on job boards to assist in their quest for a new opportunity, it’s been debated as to whether or not job boards are not a good way to get hired. The huge volume of applications that are received in response to one single posting can leave you to wonder, is getting hired from a posting off a job board even possible or does your resume just get sent into a black hole?

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Here's How Much Nurse Practitioners Earn (On Average)

Are you being paid fairly? Or, if you're thinking of becoming a nurse practitioner, how much can you expect to earn? It's pretty hard to pin exact numbers down. Some online polls show salaries that lead to dreams of a McMansion and a new car in the garage (or maybe just paying for your kids' college). Other online surveys indicate that you're probably better off keeping your job as an RN rather than making the investment of going back to school. Given the wide variety of unofficial information out there about NP salaries, we feel it's best to stick to official sources. 

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