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Press Release

120 new ANPs will drive improvements in the delivery of our health services – Minister for Health

Published: 21 November 2017
From: Department of Health

700 ANP posts to be delivered by 2021 as new education programme for advanced nursing practice launched.

Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, today launched a new programme for advanced nursing practice (ANP), which will result in the delivery of 700 ANP posts by 2021.

Minister Harris said:

“This will mean more nurses as senior decision makers and will drive improvements in our health services. This new ANP education model will see 120 ANPs trained to provide care in the areas of older person services, management of chronic diseases, including rheumatology and respiratory conditions, and the management of unscheduled care."
“This is a great programme and I am confident that he introduction of more ANPs across our health services will have a very positive impact. It will help ensure that we are providing the right care to the right person in the right location, be that a hospital, a community based service or a patient’s home. I would also like to confirm that funding has been allocated to backfill on a permanent basis the posts vacated by the candidate ANPs so these are all new posts.”

Minister Harris added:

“This initiative will provide patients with more appropriate, safe and accessible care across a range of services. I am delighted to be Minister in this next phase of advanced nursing practice that is building and growing the future for ANPs in Ireland. This type of transformational leadership by Irish nurses developed an initial framework for advanced nursing practice here in Ireland that has been referenced in other countries. Currently, ANPs in Ireland play an important role in clinical practice particularly in EDs and Local Injury Units. The value of these roles is acknowledged and adds to the quality of healthcare in Ireland. There are however areas of advanced practice that are under developed within our health services particularly around services for older person care, chronic disease management and unscheduled care which are the focus of this initiative.”

The progamme is being run by a consortium of colleges, led by University College Cork and including the Schools of Nursing & Midwifery from Trinity College Dublin, the National University of Ireland Galway and University College Dublin.

The ANP initiative is a key recommendation contained in the Department of Health draft Policy on Graduate, Specialist and Advanced Nursing Practice.

The Chief Nursing Officer, Dr Siobhan O’Halloran, in welcoming the commencement of the programme thanked the National Steering Committee, the NMBI, the HSE Nursing and Clinical Care Programmes, the Education Consortium and the nurses who have so enthusiastically embraced the initiative.

She said:

“A critical mass of ANPs delivering services in these specific areas will contribute to reducing presentations to EDs and give patients choice over when and where they receive care.”


Notes to the Editor:

The course attracted significant interest from across the health sector and the successful 120 applicants for the academic year 2017/2018 commenced the programme in October 2017.

Breakdown of the Allocation of ANPs in 2017 to Hospital Groups and Specialist areas supporting Integrated Care.

    Unscheduled Care 38
    Chronic Diseases (Respiratory) 19
    Chronic Diseases (Rheumatology) 23
    Older Persons Care 40

(Data correct as of 8/11/17)

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