APNA's definition of primary health care nursing covers health, scope of practice, primary health care, roles and settings. We also explore general practice nursing and Phillips et al. six roles of the general practice nurse.
Community health nursing
Nurses in community health work with people from many different cultural backgrounds, often with disadvantaged and marginalised people.
In partnership with their local communities, nurses in community health work to prevent illness and promote health across the lifespan by identifying barriers to healthy lifestyles and general wellness. They work with families and communities to empower individuals accessing care to change unhealthy lifestyles and provide post-acute care to people in their homes.
It is important that a nurse considering working in community health, is able to assume responsibility and a leadership role, take initiative in emergencies, have strong communication skills, can work autonomously and as part of a team, maintains patience and discretion when providing health care, and is open to working both in a clinical setting and off-site, such as conducting home visits.
Nurses in community health provide an interpretative bridge between the acute sector and community services. They embrace a social model of health to advocate and give a voice to the community accessing care. In a system which is often complex and hard to navigate, nurses in community health are able to simplify the health systems, referral pathways and access to care.
Nurses in community health work in an interdisciplinary team which can include, but is not limited to, mental health nurses, podiatrists, general practitioners, psychologists, women’s health nurses, Aboriginal health workers, allied health and hospital services.
As a nurse working in community health, membership with APNA can support you to keep up to date with industry news, connect you to other nurses in community health care, advance your knowledge in areas relevant to primary health care, safeguard your registration with quality and cost-effective professional indemnity insurance, and make informed career and professional decisions with access to the member-only Nurse Support Line.