WORK/LIFE BALANCE FROM A MOM AND NURSE PRACTITIONER

Resources for the new nurse practitioner

3/2/16




In my graduate program I was constantly hearing from instructors that the leap from the RN role to the NP role is a huge challenge in the first year of practice. I was also given the advice during the master's program, that as long as you have the resources available to you, it's okay not to know everything. I have found myself constantly checking and referring to apps, books and other such resources during my first year practicing as a NP.  Below I will review the most helpful.

1. Apps

5 minute clinical consult



This app is available for download with the yearly fee of $100.00. This app is well worth the annual fee. I reference it almost daily. It was recommended to me by a former preceptor, an Internal Medicine MD, who uses it currently and throughout his residency. This app has the most up to date guidelines for almost any disease process encountered in primary care, as well as many helpful algorithms.

Medscape



This app is a free drug reference with also up to date dosing on most pharmaceuticals on the market. It also includes drug-drug interactions, adverse affects, pharmacology, pregnancy category, and warnings.



Good Rx




Another free app recommended to me by another nurse practitioner. This one I use infrequently, however this allows you to input a drug and find the pharmacy with the cheapest price. It's also good for patient's paying cash to find out the cost of a drug out of pocket.

EPSS



This is another free app recommended to me by the nurse practitioner instructing the prep course for the national board exam. This is a screening tool from the USPSTF Preventative Services Database on recommendations based on age, gender and risk factors. This app also includes screening tools and patient education tools in pdf form.

Uptodate
This is available as an app, however it's available on your home or work computer as well. This app has most of the information included in 5 minute clinical consult, but has more emphasis on evidence-based practice and also has instructional information on many procedures. My employers have both had subscriptions, so I am not aware of the personal cost, however as I understand there are several different subscription options available here.

2. Books
NP skills course manual by EmergeED.
I'm not sure if this is technically considered a book, however this manual is amazing. I took this skills course taught by NPs with years of ER experience, and this manual was included in the fee. The 3 day course mostly included minor procedures, suturing, I & D, but also x-ray interpretation, medical decision making and charting. I referenced this manual many times while working in the ER. The manual also includes procedure notes, which are extremely helpful to have on hand for charting. I have included the link here to the company website for information on future seminars and inquiries regarding the manual.



Ferri's Best Test




I bought this reference manual because my graduate program was not heavy on diagnostic exams, and I am often not sure when to order which test and should it be with or without contrast. This is an abbreviated manual about most common diagnostic testing and also is categorized based on disease process.



 Tarascon Pocket Pharmacopoeia


This is pretty much the gold standard pharmacology reference. I use it frequently, although it is not as quick as Medscape and does not list all drug-drug interactions.


Family Practice Guidelines


I bought this as a required text in my graduate program. I don't have the most recent edition, however most information is still current. This is also helpful if you need to develop protocols at your place of employment. It also includes patient education information.


3. Your Colleagues
I can't  stress this one enough. My mentors and colleagues, MDs, NPs and PAs have been integral to the  development in my career. I would advise any new NP  to take whatever you can from people willing to mentor. Ask if you can observe procedures, ask questions, and be gracious to whatever advice you receive. Also keeping up relationships with coworkers and peers is essential in job networking and asking for advice. On this note, I ask for any additional resources you find helpful on the job??
 
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