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September 8, 2005
For immediate release

Collaborative Practice Demonstration Project at Beechwood Family Health Centre Complete

Health and Social Services

The Collaborative Practice Demonstration Project at Beechwood Family Health Centre in O’Leary has ended due to the fact that two physicians who worked collaboratively with the nurse practitioners have moved on to other areas of the province, Minister of Health & Social Services, Chester Gillan announced today.

The Collaborative Practice Demonstration Project, initiated while awaiting the legislation for nurse practitioners to practice in PEI, was developed to demonstrate a collaborative team approach between physicians and nurse practitioners in providing healthcare services.

Two physicians who worked collaboratively in the demonstration project for a year and a half have taken on new positions elsewhere in the province. “The project cannot continue without physicians in the area who are interested in working in this type of arrangement,” says Minister Gillan.

Beechwood continues to provide medical services with two permanent physicians as well as locum coverage, and efforts are on-going to recruit a stable number of permanent physicians to the area. Efforts also continue to develop the process that is required to enable nurse practitioners to practice in the province as valued members of health care teams.

“PEI supports the licensing of nurse practitioners on PEI and we’ve made considerable progress towards achieving this,” says Minister Gillan. The revised Registered Nurses Act, which includes licensing for nurse practitioners, has received royal assent and is awaiting proclamation.

A nurse practitioner is a registered nurse with additional education in health assessment, diagnosis, treatment and management of common illnesses and injuries. Nurse practitioners provide a range of health services to individuals of all ages, families, communities and groups with a focus on promoting health and preventing illness. The role of nurse practitioners is intended to collaborate with, and complement that, of other care providers in a team approach to care.

The PEI government remains committed to enabling nurse practitioners to practice in the province and work continues to ensure licensing occurs.

Media Contact: Darlene Gillis
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