People with a rheumatic disease must find ways to effectively manage their physical, emotional, employment an social impacts on their lives, as well as manage their medications and hospital appointment (1). Besides rheumatologists, other health professionals such as occupational therapists, physiotherapists and rheumatology nurses are involved to support patients in this process. Rheumatology nurses provide health care to individuals, families and communities and fulfill advanced and extended roles. These include self-management support, patient education and counseling, intra-articular injections, recommendations for and the prescription of drug treatment, referral to other health professionals, hospital administration of patients, manning telephone advice or e-consultation and monitoring disease-modifying and biological treatments (2). The role of rheumatology nurses differs greatly between countries, due to the educational level, certification and experience as well as to national regulations, contexts and funding issues related to overall healthcare provision (2,3). In several European countries, rheumatology as nursing specialty does not even exist. In other countries, rheumatology nursing has developed into a recognized specialty. In 2011, EULAR recommendations for the role of the nurse in the management of chronic inflammatory arthritis were developed. These recommendations provide a basis for emphasizing and optimizing rheumatology nursing care, in order to provide a more standardized level of professional rheumatology nursing across Europe (2).
Learning experiences During this multidisciplinary session the participants will meet:
a. the development of rheumatology nursing in the Netherlands throughout the years
b. an inside view in the daily practice of a rheumatology nurse
c. the contribution a rheumatology nurse in the multidisciplinary team
Ryan S, Hassell AB, Lewis M, et al. Impact of a rheumatology expert nurse on the wellbeing of patients attending a drug monitoring clinic. J Adv Nurs 2006;53:277-86
van Eijk-Hustings Y, van Tubergen A, Boström C, et al. EULAR recommendations for the role of the nurse in the management of chornic inflammatory arthritis. Ann Rheum Dis 2012;71:13-19
MacIsaac A, Collichia R, Helm J, et al. Standards of Practice: Professional Nursing Competencies in Rheumatology. American College of Rheumatology http://www.rheumatology.org/practice/clinical/standards/nursestandards.asp
Disclosure of Interest None Declared
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