What are the benefits of completing health assessments and appraisals for patients and families?


Health assessments and appraisals are terms that refer to health risk assessment. These assessments include a set of pre-selected diagnostic tests that are conducted on patients who seem to be at risk for a specific chronic illness. For example, if your healthcare provider feels, considering your family history and your current lifestyle, that you might be at risk for developing diabetes, they may urge you to get screened regularly for diabetes. However, the use and advantages of health assessments and appraisals go far beyond this example. This article will explore the importance of health risk assessments and the role of family nurse practitioners (FNPs) in prescribing these assessments to ensure early diagnosis of various illnesses.

What are health assessments and appraisals?

Health risk assessments are also commonly referred to as health assessments and evaluations. When a patient appears to be at risk for a particular chronic condition, pre-selected tests are performed to evaluate a patient’s condition. These tests can be in the form of a questionnaire with open-ended or closed-ended questions or in-hospital diagnostic tests such as x-rays and blood tests. The type of test prescribed depends on the evaluation of the healthcare provider and their suspicions related to their patient’s health.

Why are health assessments important and what are the benefits?

Health assessments are a common tool utilized in primary care settings. They assist the patient and the healthcare team in creating a plan of treatment. Additionally, these assessments may also increase the healthcare provider’s understanding of the requirements of its whole patient population to come up with better treatment options. Some assessments are completed in the form of questionnaires, on paper or on computer, via an email sent by the healthcare provider to their patients. Others are completed in-office, where the physician or the nurse practitioner prescribes relevant screening tests to the patients based on their answers to rule out the possibility of developing a prevalent illness. Their goal is to identify difficulties before they grow into more serious ones. Additionally, they identify illnesses early on, allowing for speedier intervention and a higher patient survival rate.

Some of the many ways in which health assessments and screenings are important are highlighted below:

  • They help to find health hazards that individuals or families might not be aware of before.
  • They offer information and guidance to people with a family background in health issues and how they can preventtheir onset.
  • They allow early illness detection and increase the likelihood of survival.
  • They reassure patients that they are in charge of their health.

What is the role of an FNP in prescribing assessments to their patients?

One of the primary responsibilities of family nurse practitioners is to help diagnose, treat, and manage patients’ illnesses. Since they can work with complete autonomy, FNPs are qualified to diagnose and treat a wide range of medical issues. They can perform physical examinations, request laboratory and diagnostic testing, analyze the findings, and start the proper courses of action. When required, they can also perform non-surgical medical treatments and write prescriptions for drugs. To give their patients the best treatment possible, they collaborate with doctors and other medical specialists.

Similarly, FNPs provide individualized treatment programs based on the requirements and medical background of each patient. FNPs prescribe medication, make dosage adjustments, suggest lifestyle changes, define goals, and monitor patients’ ongoing progress. To enable patients to take charge of their health, FNPs also offer crucial assistance and instruction on healthy living and self-care.

Lastly, a major duty of FNPs is to perform regular screening of their patients to detect and avoid health problems early on. Tests for blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, cholesterol, cancer, and other conditions are included in this list. Frequent screenings by FNPs allow for the early detection of any problems and prompt treatment and action before they worsen.

How can you pursue a career as a family nurse practitioner?

The path to becoming a family nurse practitioner involves multiple steps. The first thing you must do is complete an associate or a bachelor’s degree in nursing. This is essential because enrolling in either of these courses will equip you with the knowledge and skills you will need in the work field.

Medical specialties, including neurology, psychiatry, gastrointestinal, and cardiac care, will all be covered by your nursing expertise. In both acute and non-acute care settings, aspiring nurses also gain practical experience. Nursing students, therefore, need to be trained in working with a wide range of patients and in carrying out their tasks in various settings.

The next step will be to complete your advanced education by enrolling in a master’s level program. Carson Newman University offers nurse practitioner programs in Tennessee, such as the Master of Science in Nursing – Family Nurse Practitioner program. This is a good option if you wish to pursue your master’s education within your own time, as the program is completed online. This medium of education allows busy nurses to complete their advanced education on a schedule that supports work-life balance. The program covers key areas such as pathophysiology, pharmacology and research methods.

The takeaways

Health screening and assessments are a crucial component of high-quality healthcare. These assessments make sure that the onset of a disease in a patient or a population is caught before it can even begin. In cases where the disease has already affected the patient, these screenings make sure that the patient’s condition is managed appropriately and progression is delayed as much as possible. FNPs play a crucial role in this regard as they assess their patients in a timely manner to prevent disease onset.

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