Policy Paper: Advanced Practice Nurse

Healthcare organizations face various challenges that affect the way patients receive health care services. The issues affect the structuring and provision of care and the relationship between nurses and their patients. One of the leading problems affecting Nurse Practitioner is high workload, which causes burnout and negatively affects the quality of care provided to patients.

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Nurse Practitioner is High Workload

Advanced nurse practitioners play a critical role in the provision of quality healthcare. They provide crucial care by assuming roles traditionally played by medical practitioners, including primary physicians (Jackson & Carberry, 2014). Physicians, nurse practitioners, and hospital leaders have revealed their concerns regarding the workload for NPs. The insufficient supply of the personnel is a significant cause of increasing numbers of patients seeking services directly from nurse practitioners. The high demand for their services is created by the interplay of various factors, including increasing demand because of chronic illnesses and the aging population, the declining number of medical practitioners, such as primary physicians as well as demographic changes in the nursing workforce, including the increase in the number of nurses working as NPs. Besides, NPs are providing interventions that were traditionally provided by physicians, including patient evaluation, diagnosis, and prescription of treatment (Black, 2016). As a result, their workload has been increasing over the years, creating high levels of burnout among NPs, affecting their ability to provide quality care to patients (Dyrbye et al. 2017). The issue affects the level of patient satisfaction.

The Effect of Nurse Practitioner is High Workload

Clinical data reveal a critical relationship between high workload among NPs and burnout and the threat of negative patient and organizational outcomes, such as increased mortality because of the inability to provide quality and safe care. NPs who work in highly demanding environments are at a high risk of suffering from burnout because of stress and compassion fatigue. The issue might affect the quality and quantity of care provided to patients while increasing the labor and operating costs for healthcare organizations. The issue also creates a decrease in the effectiveness and efficiency of care that the NPs provide to their patients (Jackson & Carberry, 2014). NPs face significant demands in the health care sector because of the change in the way they provide care to various patient populations. For example, they have to work more and provide comprehensive services to meet the increasing demands for their services in various settings, including primary care. Cherry and Jacob (2016) noted that health care challenges, such as the shortage of other critical health care providers, are increasing the demand for the services that advanced practice nurses (APNs) offer in the healthcare sector in the United States.

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NPS is authorized to provide a full range of services as long as their training and education achievement can allow. Therefore, in the quest to close the gap in care and serve the growing number of patients seeking their services, they suffer fatigue and burnout that potentially compromise the quality of services (Poghosyan, Liu, Shang, & D’aunno, 2017).  They can effectively serve their patients in primary care health using their unique training and skills, but they might not provide optimal care because of the workload.


The modern healthcare system in the United States faces considerable challenges and policy issues that affect the safety and quality of care provided to patients. One of the policy issues is the increasing workload for NPs that cause burnout and affect their ability to provide quality care to their patients. The issue comprises the patient and organizational outcomes in the country’s healthcare system, which necessitates an effective policy solution.

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